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Why you can’t use a credit card to buy medical marijuana and how that may change

Why you can’t use a credit card to buy medical marijuana and how that may change

At Revolutionary Clinics, we’re proud to offer a friendly, comfortable experience at our dispensaries plus the convenience of cannabis home delivery to your door. We do everything we can to provide the best customer service experience possible but there’s one big problem we’re powerless to change:

The fact that dispensaries in Massachusetts are only able to accept cash or debit cards as payment for our medical marijuana products.

Few industries have to follow more federal government regulations than banking and financial services. Since cannabis is still illegal under federal law, any bank or credit card company that did business with legal medical marijuana dispensaries like Revolutionary Clinics would put itself at risk for criminal prosecution. In the eyes of the federal government, any financial institution that accepts deposits from the sale of cannabis or extends credit to consumers for the purchase of medical marijuana is “aiding and abetting” a federal crime.

Here in Massachusetts, despite the fact that medical marijuana is totally legal, there are just a handful of private banks and credit unions that are willing to work with legal medical marijuana dispensaries like Revolutionary Clinics. Payment apps like CanPay and card services like Linx have provided our consumers with some convenient options to taking cash out of the ATM (and we’re grateful for them). Nevertheless, one of the most frequently asked questions we get from our patients is “why can’t I buy cannabis with my credit card?” Our patients not only want the extra financial freedom that credit cards offer, they want to earn the same rewards or loyalty points for their cannabis purchases as they do for purchases like gas, groceries, and dining out.

Well, a few weeks ago we shared an article on our Facebook page about a bill that could eliminate the legal risk for banks and credit card companies. Not only would this bill make it possible for medical marijuana patients to pay for their cannabis with their credit cards, it would make 100% of the $9 billion in revenue from cannabis sales available for the banking industry to loan to other businesses and consumers. Money from cannabis sales means more money in the banking system for important things like small business loans for entrepreneurs and mortgages for first time home buyers.

Introducing medical marijuana patients’ best hope for more convenient cannabis purchasing: SAFE, the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act

The Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act is the product of what The Hill describes as a bipartisan coalition of House lawmakers pushing to give federally chartered banks and credit unions legal cover to serve the rapidly expanding cannabis industry. You don’t have to be a political expert to know that anytime the term “bipartisan” is used to describe any kind of bill, there’s reason for optimism. That’s especially true now because some of the representatives who opposed this bill when it was first introduced in 2017 were voted out during the mid-term elections. New blood in Washington DC combined with greater acceptance of the therapeutic benefits and economic impact of medical marijuana have many cannabis advocates excited about SAFE.

Here’s what you can do to help make SAFE happen and make purchasing medical marijuana more convenient

Call the Massachusetts Members of the U.S. House of Representatives’ Financial Services Committee  and ask them to support the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act (SAFE).

There are two Massachusetts Representatives on this committee:

Ayanna Pressley: (202) 225-5111

Stephen F. Lynch:  (202) 225-8273

Representatives Pressley and Lynch were elected in order to serve your interests. If making it easier and more convenient to purchase medical marijuana is important to you, it’s not only your right to call your representatives, it’s your responsibility.

Call or write your bank or your credit card company and let them know you want them to be able to do business with legal medical marijuana dispensaries like Revolutionary Clinics.

Banks and credit card companies are in business to make money and that starts with listening to their customers. When you call or write, be sure to let them know that the American Bankers Association (ABA), the Independent Community Bankers of America, and the Credit Union National Association all support the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act so they’ll be in good company.

Like us on Facebook where we’ll be sharing the latest updates on SAFE and opportunities to voice your support.

As we said earlier, all of us at Revolutionary Clinics are deeply committed to helping you and ALL of our patients to have the best possible medical marijuana buying experience and therapeutic results. We’re 100% in favor of the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act and we’ll be doing everything we can to help it pass. That includes calling our representatives, contacting our financial institutions, and rallying support any way we can from our patients, industry colleagues, and community partners. We’ll all benefit if the Secure and Fair Enforcement Banking Act – if we all work together, we can make it happen!

To learn more about SAFE or to find answers to any of your other medical marijuana questions, please stop by the Revolutionary Clinics dispensary nearest you or give us a call at 617-213-6006!


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