NB: Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens In Uptown Saint John

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Saint John residents can now purchase medical marijuana right in the heart of the city’s uptown, provided they have the right paperwork.

Medicinal Grounds Cannabis Centre opened this week on Prince William Street.

Owner Ryan Francis said he chose the location to address a lack of convenience for Saint John residents looking for medical marijuana.

“You don’t have to wait a month through mail and you don’t need to travel to say Nova Scotia, Fredericton, Moncton, Ontario,” he said, standing in the bright waiting room that resembles most health clinics, other than the lime green paint.

Francis, a former Fort McMurray worker, said he got the idea to open the centre from veteran friends who use medical marijuana.

While anyone over the age of 19 is allowed access, Francis stressed only those with a certified prescription from a doctor or a card from Health Canada will be allowed access to the dispensary products.

“We do have a 24-hour period wait here,” he said. “We just do that to make sure everything’s what people say it is and make sure everything’s 100 per cent true.”

Once all the paperwork checks out, members can purchase marijuana products from the location. Currently the back room has about 10 different strains of weed and hash as well as two edible products. Stickers on the jars containing products with names like Comatose suggest ideal usage for various medical symptoms.

Francis is himself a user of medical marijuana for joint pain and said he expects a visit from the police at some point. But the centre’s owner said he is doing everything by the books to ensure the location will remain open.

Seeking doctor

Up a flight of stairs from the clinic, Francis has also opened a marijuana resource centre. Inside, those curious about medical marijuana can draw from several pamphlets and posters.

Francis said the centre doesn’t have its own medical doctor to provide referrals, but it is looking for one. For now, it is providing information to customers about how to contact a doctor using Skype.

Since opening its doors on Tuesday, around 40 people have entered. Francis said only about six of them had the proper paperwork to purchase anything.

Among them was Cody Ferris, who said he’s had a Health Canada-approved medical marijuana card for more than a year to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). “I was interested in getting registered here,” said Ferris, who only learned about the location on Wednesday morning.

“The biggest inconvenience I find with the current system is you having to order it online,” so having a brick and mortar store is appealing, he said.

Ferris said he’s also unhappy with the limitations on what he can currently purchase online. But Francis made it clear that his customers won’t be getting more dope than they are prescribed by a doctor. “We cannot, will not ever sell them more than what they’re prescribed.”

News Moderator: Katelyn Baker
Full Article: Medical Marijuana Dispensary Opens In Uptown Saint John
Author: Matthew Bingley
Contact: CBC News
Photo Credit: Matthew Bingley
Website: CBC News