Buying Intentionally: How You Can Contribute to this Social Justice Movement in California

September 18, 2020 0 Comment

The political climate in the United States this summer has unearthed a lot of deep-rooted racial issues, and the cannabis industry is an environment that is in desperate need of some reevaluation.

Not only are those in the industry battling the legalization of marijuana and navigating those tricky waters, but the producer base is overwhelmingly white, leaving little room at the table for Black-owned businesses.

Additionally, there is a shocking discrepancy between marijuana charges and arrests for Black and white consumers.

Social Justice Movement in California

The sad truth is that these issues have been recognized, but little change has come from these efforts. One example of this would be California governor Gavin Newsom’s futile attempts at economically supporting communities of color that were disproportionately affected by incarceration and law enforcement.

However, as a consumer, you have a lot more power than you might realize. You can choose which retailers you support, and in turn, what type of company you agree with and would like to see thrive. Make it a point to buy from the very suppliers that Governor Newsom’s proposed legislation was supposed to help.

Fortunately, finding these very retailers might be easier than you think. In June, Emerald Magazine published a detailed list of dispensaries, manufacturers, CBD companies, and Black-owned brands.

This is more for the California consumer, but other states such as Illinois and Massachusetts have similar social equity programs that give special attention to organizations that are adversely affected by the drug war. If you do not live in one of these states, you can demand your legislation to create such programs for local businesses.

Cannaclusive – A Non-profit For The Cannabis Industry

Cannaclusive, a non-profit for the inclusivity of the cannabis industry, publishes a list of businesses that are owned by Black entrepreneurs called the InclusiveBase. As of June, there were more than 480 businesses listed in the database.

The InclusiveBase does not only extend to dispensaries; activities listed include consulting services, flower-touching firms, rolling-paper companies, and accounting firms. Co-founder Mary Pryor says, “Our list is the most accurate and comprehensive given the amount of actual Black ownership.”

You have the power to make a change, even if it is as small as choosing where to purchase your cannabis products. Use your force for good.


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