Much has been made about a proposal pending before the Cannabis Control Commission to allow marijuana home deliveries in Massachusetts. If the concept makes you pause, you are not alone. Among 54 percent of voters who voted for legalization in 2016, there’s a subset who could imagine stores selling cannabis, but are nervous about it arriving at one’s doorstep. There may be concerns about safety. Maybe it’s the fear of diversion to children. Maybe it’s NIMBY-ism: a store operating one town over is different than a delivery van arriving next door. For those who voted against legalization but begrudgingly accept stores opening, delivery may seem too much, too fast.
I believe there is a place for home delivery in our regulated system if we include guardrails that treat it like storefront retail. That includes identification checks when customers make an order and when the delivery is made to prevent underage sales. Another is the use of body cameras for employees to deter robberies and provide evidence when they occur (see: California and Nevada). Crime risks must factor into any safely regulated system that functions well, not just for employees and customers, but also for the public at large. Of course, privacy is important, and it is reasonable to limit how video is used.
If conflicting concerns exist, why allow delivery now? The reality is you can receive marijuana at your front door in Massachusetts today. Six medical marijuana dispensaries already offer delivery to patients, and some use body cameras voluntarily. At least one reportedly made over 2000 deliveries in 2018 without any reported incident.
More compelling, however, is this truth: illicit dealers are happy to serve your neighbor or students living in off-campus apartments right now. How prevalent is it? Check Yelp. Alongside recommendations for restaurants, you’ll find reviews of