Washington State's 'Joints For Jabs' Vaccine Incentive Way Better Than 'Maui Wowie For Your Owie'
The state of Washington has rolled out a new incentive for people to get the coronavirus vaccine: Get a shot, and get a free marihuana cigarette, or "joint," as the hopheads and jazz musicians call it. The state Liquor and Cannabis Board authorized the "Joints for Jabs" promotion, which will allow cannabis dispensaries to give people over 21 who get vaccinated at in-store clinics one pre-rolled joint for either their first or second vaccination, no not both. No edibles or other products, either, sorry.
The promotion is aimed at getting the state's percentage of adults who've had at least one shot up to 70 percent. Because the state and federal tallies use different criteria, it seems a weekend tweet saying the goal had been reached was in error: The federal count looks at folks aged 18 and up, but Washington bases its figure on people 16 and up. By that method, Washington's only at 64 percent. Once that goal is reached, the state can really start reopening and getting back to normal, according to Gov Jay (HA HA, HIS NAME IS "JAY" AND ITS A WEED STORY!) Inslee.
The weed board said it approved the tokes for pokes after receiving requests from several cannabis retailers for permission to do some sort of spliffy incentive for vaccinations. And while Washington's is the first such statewide initiative, the idea seems to have originated with an Arizona dispensary, which made a joint effort (GET IT?) with a Phoenix medical group to hold on-site vaccine clinics at its three shops. People who got a vaccine received both a pre-rolled joint and a cannabis gummy in a promotion called "Snax for Vaxx," which is a way better name than "Gentle Bud for Antibodies in your Blood."
The joints for jabs promotion is just one of several initiatives Washington is offering to encourage vaccinations. In addition, the liquor and cannabis board is allowing bars to offer a free beer, glass of wine, or cocktail to any adult over 21 with proof of vaccination, and that one, there doesn't have to be an on-site vaccine clinic, which is just as well, given the potential for a tragic karaoke outbreak.
The state health department is also distributing $500,000 in gift cards to folks who get vaccinated at "Care-A-Van" mobile clinics, and Inslee recently announced Washington's own version of a vaccine lottery, called "Shot of a Lifetime." In that one, the state lottery will do four weekly $250,000 drawings for vaccinated adults, with a final million-dollar drawing to cap it off. The promotion also includes $1 million in scholarships and free tuition for the students.
So all in all, Washington, which suffered some of the worst early outbreaks in the pandemic last year, is on its way to getting most of its residents vaccinated.
Maybe Washington could try one more thing: some kind of prize — weed, beer, or a lottery entry — for vaccinated people who convince a friend or family member to get the shot, too. They could call it "Referer Madness."
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