SONshine Organics, a medical marijuana dispensary in Olympia, Washington, this week announced that it will continue operations, but will “transition its business model” after its medicinal cannabis inventory, meant for patients, was seized by Thurston County sheriff’s deputies on July 26. There have been no arrests in last week’s raid.
“SONshine Organics Network has been advocating for medical cannabis patients rights since 2010,” owner Sarena Haskins said. “We have rallied, testified, lobbied, and more, all on behalf of our patient network.
“The sickest children and adults are the ones hurt most by the state’s greed and ignorance,” Haskins said. “Parents of sick children are scared to speak out for fear of reprisals. People will die as lawmakers fail to admit their mistake.
“Recent changes in State laws mean we ARE changing our business model,” Haskins said. “While we have always been a patient resource center, we intend now to focus on consulting, classes and seminars (Growing your medicine 101/201, growing indoors, growing outdoors, processing safely, and more), social activities to keep patients active and networked, and advocacy programs.”
“We are working with our local Sheriff on this transition process, because changing over ANY business model takes time and energy,” Haskins said. “We concur with the Sheriff that we do NOT want existing inventories at our or any dispensary, or with any of our suppliers, to end up going to the black market. In addition, SONshine, like many others around the State, are in process to receive licenses, but backlog and bureaucracy has delayed them.
“Many of our patients who grow their own medicine are also caught in a catch-22 created by the new law,” Haskins pointed out. “The clear intent is that all qualified and registered patients may grow their own plants.
“As of today, however, there is NO legal means for individual patients to obtain plants,” Haskins said. “None at all. It’s like telling folks they can grow their own bread, but they can’t have any flour or yeast.
“Registered co-ops can obtain plants, but based on the WSLCB rules for locating co-ops, the majority of patients in Thurston County cannot form a co-op,” Haskins said. “This is unacceptable, as the intent of the law is clear. We intend to work ceaselessly to create a pathway for our patients to obtain seedling plants to grow from.
“In addition, it appears the statewide database for patients IS in operation, though the Department of Health indicated it might be delayed,” Haskins said. “The vast majority of retail stores, however are not set up to process recognition cards. Until this process is convenient and simple for patients, we will continue to advocate on behalf of our patients.
“We are grateful to live in a county where our elected officials listen, work with us, and make all efforts to ensure the rights of all citizens are protected,” Haskins said. “While our business model is transitioning, our fundamental goal is – putting patients first.”
“We moved out of 7707 Martin Way, but SON will shine somewhere in a home again,” Haskins told Toke Signals on Wednesday.