Cannabis stores are no longer considered an essential service in Ontario, and all shops they will be forced to close as of Saturday night. The Ontario provincial government removed cannabis stores from their list of essential businesses, according to CP24.
Many businesses across the province have already been deemed non-essential and have been ordered to close under government orders since March 24, however cannabis and liquor stores have remained open up to this point.
Mental health and addiction experts told Ontario Premier Doug Ford that keeping cannabis stores open was "absolutely critical" during the COVID-19 pandemic. Premier Ford said, “There are people out there with addictions and we’re here to support them,”
That all changed when the provincial government released its recently revised list of essential business on Friday. Ontario Cannabis Stores were among the businesses on the chopping block, and will be closing all their shops by 11:59 p.m. on Saturday.
Ontarians looking to continue purchasing cannabis will have to do so online at the Ontario Cannabis Store website. However, a notable increase in demand has meant that the shops are unable to offer same-day delivery.
Beer, wine, and liquor stores are still considered essential and will remain open.