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It seems like every other day we’re reminded how vulnerable we are. Two or three more dispensaries robbed by men wearing Halloween masks, holding budtenders at gunpoint with automatic weapons.

The mounting threat is relentless.

Even if you don’t keep much cash on hand, the criminal gaze is fixed on dispensaries like yours. Why is that?

Because of rampant headlines spreading the myth that banks won’t deal with marijuana companies, and so the belief has become widespread that dispensaries are unsecured havens with hundreds of thousands of dollars lying around.

Because of rampant headlines spreading the myth that banks won’t deal with marijuana companies, and so the belief has become widespread that dispensaries are unsecured havens with hundreds of thousands of dollars lying around.

It’s almost as though criminals actually believe you’ve got a bunch of potheads running shop, too stoned to lock the safe.

According to SIVA Enterprises, a business development firm for cannabis entrepreneurs, dispensaries have replaced banks, liquor stores, and pharmacies as the most likely target of robbery and organized crime. That notoriety will only increase as states continue to open more medicinal and recreational dispensaries.

In 2015, dispensaries faced a frightening 50-50 chance of being burglarized — up from just 17% in 2009.

So thank goodness for Government Compliance Regulations that require dispensaries to have a sufficient security plan in place for licensure, right?

Well, the answer to that is, “-ish.”

Yes, a security plan means more protection for you, your employees, your inventory, and your profits…

…But someone’s gotta deal with the tedium and the stress-headache that is administering to licensure paperwork. And something tells me neither Cheech nor Chong is up to the task.

But not to worry! We are here to tell you everything you need to know to write a thorough, air-tight Dispensary Security Plan that will ensure your licensure criteria are met and that your dispensary, your employees, and your product are protected.

You may find it comforting to know there are reputable consultants who can help formulate your plan.

We here at MassRoots have even discovered insanely easy fill-in-the-blank templates that will save you days, or even weeks, of work and ensure that your Dispensary Security Plan is professionally handled and satisfies even the most minute regulations.

Click here if you already know the done-for-you template is exactly what you’ve been searching for.

To learn more about what a DSP does, along with step-by-step instructions on how to write your own, read on.

Dispensary Security Plan

So, What is a Dispensary Security Plan Anyway?

Simply put, a Dispensary Security Plan legitimizes your business. You are not a criminal selling illicit drugs. You are not dealing weed from some dank motel room.

Therefore, you should not be expected to just live with the fear that masked gunmen could kick down the door any minute and make off with all your product and profits.

If criminals do decide to go there, they must ultimately contend with the fact that you are a protected establishment; that security, prevention, and law enforcement are on your side.

Experts at Lake Forest Group suggest that, in the event of a breach, a Dispensary Security Plan should ensure protocols are in place to quickly and effectively recover equipment, inventory, and that proper support be extended to affected staff and customers.

And, just as it is the genius of the constitution to allow for change and amendment through obtained wisdom (hence your right to sell marijuana legally), so a good Dispensary Security Plan will also allow for growth and innovation to ensure security protocols and technologies improve regularly.

A Dispensary Security Plan (DSP) establishes expectations, safety measures, and protective protocols that work to create a safe work environment and develop a well-trained, responsive staff that you can trust when you are away from the office.

A Dispensary Security Plan (DSP) establishes expectations, safety measures, and protective protocols that work to create a safe work environment and develop a well-trained, responsive staff that you can trust when you are away from the office.

And even though we both know that your dispensary draws ordinary and harmless clientele, many businesses in your neighborhood may still subscribe to the notion that the marijuana industry is destined to scandalize and ruin the integrity of the surrounding community.

By establishing your dispensary as a legitimate business that values security and protection for your employees and customers, you are more likely to earn the respect and trust as a valuable asset to the community.

Because that’s what you are!

Do I Really Need a Dispensary Security Plan?

The sad and brutal truth is that, yes, you do need a Dispensary Security Plan.

According to Adherence Compliance, incomplete security logs and inadequate surveillance systems are two of the most costly dispensary infractions. Security experts at Lake Forest Group report that “when applications were evaluated…whether or not the license was granted was ultimately determined by the strength of the security plan.”

And beyond the cash and product loss, SIVA estimates the hidden costs of a burglary to be estimated up to $25,000.

So with more agencies involved and liable to take a hit with the potential plunder of your coveted enterprise, having a Dispensary Security Plan is now required by law.

Which, ultimately, is a good thing, right?

Sure, but what this means for you, Mr. President, is that it is now up to you to cut through all the red tape and appease whatever merciless and godforsaken government agency is in charge of processing your tedious paperwork.

That is how you woke up this morning, right? Thinking, “You know what, I could use a little more hassle in my day. A bureaucratic cherry to top everything off.”

You most certainly did not. That’s why you need to know exactly what must be included in a Dispensary Security Plan to be sure your licensure and your property will not be put in jeopardy.

So, here is everything you need to know in order to create a Dispensary Security Plan that satisfies all policies, procedures, and systems that must be in place in order to impress the dreary folks at the licensing office.

Hunker down. We won’t lie, building this security plan is only marginally easier than bringing Frankenstein’s monster to life with a perfectly timed bolt of lightning.

Dispensary Security Plan

Luckily, you now have the instruction manual. All you’ve got to do is put the monster together!

Your Step-By-Step Guide: What Your Dispensary Security Plan Absolutely Must Have

Generally speaking, your Dispensary Security Plan should serve as a contract of security measures you pledge to uphold.

Additionally, it should as a persuasive document convincing the licensing agents that you have considered absolutely every minute detail of your security needs.

Some important guidelines to consider throughout your DSP:

  • Be more thorough than you think is necessary. Government agencies seemingly LOVE to find the one minuscule technicality to void your entire document.
  • The DSP should be crafted in the language of a legally binding document such as a contract.
  • Outline a budget for your DSP (e.g. $50,000 – $1,000,000)
  • The length of the document can (and should) reach up to 25 pages or more depending on your specific security procedures.
  • Be prepared to include relevant attachments such as floor plans, facility blueprints, technology specs, outside vendor/partnership information, sample documents, handbooks used for security training, staffing plan, Inventory Control Plan, Appendix, etc.
  • Be sure to demonstrate, anywhere and everywhere possible, which specific regulations you are adhering to with your protocols and procedures. These government-official types hate/love it when you know their jobs as well as they do.

The most successful Dispensary Security Plans we have seen are divided into three primary sections. Because of this, I have broken down exactly what you will need under each division below:

  1. Introduction
  2. Facility Security
  3. Operational Security

1. Your Introduction

Your introduction should make your objective clear: that you intend to lay out a comprehensive security plan of the measures you take to meet the application requirements of the department responsible for your licensure.

In your introduction, you also want to include the name of your security agent or agency and the role he/she/they will play in implementing your plan.

Then provide an overview of how your DSP is structured and organized. For instance, here you might explain the breakdown of sections (Facility Security and Operations Security), and why your plan is organized this way.

Your introduction should probably be at least one page in length.

Dispensary Security Plan

2. Facility Security

This section basically needs to provide painstaking detail of your dispensary location, design, and all security measures and equipment used as well as implementation procedures.

Physical Building

  • Provide your physical address. Describe your property and the neighborhood in journalistic detail. Seriously, they wanna know e-v-e-r-y-t-h-i-n-g.
  • Include a site plan and a floor plan that provide a layout of your facility’s security features and where they are located on the property.
  • Give detailed descriptions of all lights on the property and what function each light serves in the overall security plan.
  • Provide a detailed account of the company employing security guards to your facility. Detail screening procedures as well as the duties of each guard.
  • Explain all components of your perimeter security including company information and specs of fences, doors, walls, etc.
  • Give a detailed account of how authorized staff will access your facility. Include things like parking, personnel entrance and exit, requirement of keycards or passcode, deliveries, ID badges, and how commercial site visitors will be accommodated.
  • Describe (in painstaking detail) how patients / customers / designated caregivers will access the building. Include parking availability, entrance and exit through the facility, screening, and how these visitors will navigate the building and the processes taken to verify credentials, identification, etc.
  • Detail procedures for other site visitors other than patients and caregivers such as law enforcement officers, political officials, health professionals, members of the media.
  • Explain how movement throughout facility access points will be monitored or controlled.

Electronic Security System

  • Provide detailed information about your video surveillance equipment and its function.
  • Give vendor information for Third-Party Monitoring and their procedures for response to breaches and engagement with law enforcement.
  • How intrusion and motion detection will be covered.
  • The burglary alarm system and its features, testing, and maintenance.
  • How you plan to secure the building in the event of fire.

Policies and Procedures for Facility Security

  • Give detailed accounts of how incidents, breaches, and other emergencies will be managed. Be thorough. Think of every conceivable scenario and cover it.
  • Present your procedures for how you train your staff to respond to emergencies.
  • Explain the process for notifying authorities.
  • Describe the closing procedures.
  • Define any and all measures taken to prevent theft and diversion. Include storage, location, agreement arrangements made with patients, as well as purchasing procedures.
  • Inform how you plan to prevent on-site consumption.
  • Explain the design and maintenance of an Incident Log.
  • Tell how suspicious activity and loitering will be managed.

Dispensary Security Plan

3. Operations Security

In this section you will seek to prove that your routine operations and procedures augment the physical security of the facility.

Workforce Security

  • Outline staffing procedures, background checks, and hiring guidelines.
  • For hired staff, define what training and drills are required to ensure employees are equipped to manage security protocol, emergency response, patient reception and registration, privacy and confidentiality, procedures for product safety, and crime prevention.
  • Explain how staff will be tested or evaluated on proficiency of security standards.
  • Cover how you plan to keep and maintain personnel records.
  • Outline your procedures for Limited Cash Operation.
  • Provide your business hours and all relevant information.

Inventory Security

  • Detail your transaction procedures and provide your Inventory Control or Tracking Plan.
  • Give a detailed description of your storage procedures and equipment specs for safes, sprinkler system, and the storage area.
  • Provide an exhaustive outline of the transportation procedures, tracking, and how deliveries will be protected.
  • You need to have a specific plan for disposal of unused, surplus, lost, or stolen medical marijuana.
  • Do you keep meticulous records? (Hint: Your answer is Yes! Always Yes!) Describe your procedures for your impeccable record-keeping system.

Information Systems Security

  • Describe what measures you take to keep your data and information systems secure.
  • Show them you’ve thought of everything from virus protection to data backups to encrypted servers.
  • Include relevant and necessary forms that detail your data security.
  • Be detailed about how patient health records are kept secure.

Cannabis Dispensary

Where Do I Even Begin? Is There Someone Who Can Help Me With This Beast?

You now have everything you need to know to write your own Dispensary Security Plan.

Trust me, we know it is a lot to take into account, not to mention the overwhelming pressure of making a tiny (but costly!) mistake.

So where do you turn if you just want your DSP done for you?

We here at MassRoots have scoured the earth (AKA – the Internet) and have found the best options to help you write a fool-proof, airtight Dispensary Security Plan.

Done-For-You DSP Templates From

If you want the easiest and most effective method for writing your Dispensary Security Plan, then downloading a fill-in-the-blank template from is–BY FAR–your best option.

If you haven’t checked out their website, then click here and have a look around. They have everything you can imagine when it comes to handling the official documentation around successfully managing your dispensary operations.

Their expertly crafted templates allow you to literally fill in the blank to create a personalized, comprehensive, and impressive Dispensary Security Plan. And the small fee they charge for the template is a lot more affordable than the other options we have found.

With the template, you get the best of both worlds. You get the help of a pre-written legal document, and at the same time you get to be the one who fills in the essential information. That way you can be sure everything is recorded accurately and to your expectations.

Yes, Yes, Yes, that’s exactly what I’ve been looking for, take me there Now!

Seek Help For Your DSP With a Consulting Firm

There are many licensed consultants who are qualified to write up your DSP for you. With this option, you have the benefit of working alongside a professional who actually writes documents like this for a living.

You can dump all your details on them and let them work their magic. With this service, you pay for the document as well as the hours of labor the consultant spends getting to know the ins and outs of your entire operation.

Which is to say, this is a more costly option.

CannaGuard Security offers a free, no obligation 30 minute phone consultation so you can discuss your needs before signing up. They are dedicated to ensuring your business is 100% compliant and secure so you don’t have to worry. They will even provide a quarterly re-inspection to make sure you remain compliant in the future. CannaGuard Security has worked with many different cannabis related businesses across the nation and is our top pick for a trusted security consulting resource.

Here are two other consulting firms MassRoots trusts and recommends:

MPS Security

Canna Security America

Cannabis Consultant

It’s Time to Get Cracking!

So that’s every secret we have to share with you about how to write a solid DSP that will secure your facility and your licensure.

Which method are you going to use? Will you write it yourself?

Will you download the ridiculously amazingly simple DSP Template from

Or will you hire a consulting firm to write yours for you?

Take a moment to let us know what you plan to do and how it’s going in our comments section below.

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