August 17 was National Nonprofit Daywhich you may not have heard of, but you will surely recognize these six groups that are and have been at the forefront of cannabis advances working for an equitable future for each generation affected by the war on drugswhich, among other issues, has generated billions of wasted dollars in racist arrests.
According to ACLU, the war on cannabis is still costing US taxpayers an estimated $3.6 billion. As cannabis legalization sweeps the United States, one cannot miss the prosperity the industry is enjoying and forget that less than a generation ago judges handed down harsh sentences, especially among communities. marginalized.
Decades of over-policing communities of color have created a sense of mistrust when encountering local police.
For example, a Noted ACLU research report that “there were more than six million arrests between 2010 and 2018, and black people are still more likely to be arrested for marijuana possession than white people in every state, including those that have legalized marijuana “.
Take a look at what these NGOs are doing:
Cannabis Workers Coalition is a non-profit, de facto union for cannabis workers, especially cannabis workers of color, which provides support for employees who are not members of a collective bargaining organization or who have been legally excluded from coverage by US labor laws, helping them from incident reporting to employer investigations. The Coalition’s objective is to improve working conditions by setting up training and direct awareness programs. If you would like to join the movement and support CWC’s innovative programming led by women of color, donate here.
Picture by Cannabis Workers Coalition
Marijuana Policy Project (MPP), an organization working solely on marijuana policy reform in the United States, is on a mission to change federal law to allow states to determine their own cannabis policies. Founded in 1995, MPP was instrumental in establishing medical and recreational legalization that changed the landscape of contemporary cannabis culture. The organization has been the driving force behind ballot measures in Alaska, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Montana and Nevada. He continues to focus on regulating cannabis like alcohol in several other states, while pushing for medical cannabis bills in Nebraska, South Carolina and Tennessee.
Picture by Proposed Marijuana Policy
Supernova Women is an Oakland 501(c)(3) non-profit organization created to drive women’s involvement and influence in the cannabis industry, particularly among women in the BIPOC community. The organization prioritizes education, advocacy, and networking through the development of the Groundbreaking Workforce Development for Social Equity Cohort, a highly specialized program that helps members of the community affected by the war on drugs. Through its annual social equity impact report, Supernova demonstrates the group’s effectiveness.
Picture by Supernova Women
Cannaclusive was created to facilitate the fair representation of minority cannabis users. He was inspired by the growing opportunities and focused on the diversity issues that arise in mainstream cannabis culture. It has an excellent guide to minority-run cannabis businesses in each state to help shoppers make smart buying decisions. Intended to provide a solution for users who want to contribute to a fairer cannabis industry but don’t have the extra funds to channel to a preferred non-profit organization. Cannaclusive also ensures that minority consumers are a valuable ally in the fight for legalization and de-stigmatization.
Image courtesy of Cannaclusive
women grow up is another encouraging program that supports women in cannabis. Created in 2014 as a way to invest in the next generation of female leaders, the group hosts seminars to help female founders continue their cannabis education and hosts events to build strong community networks. Women Grow envisions a future in which cannabis prohibition ends globally and wants women to be ready to lead in all facets of the industry once that happens.
women grow up and Benzinga came up with the “INVEST IN IT” slogan, created to amplify women-owned businesses at the upcoming Benzinga Cannabis Capital conference. Through this partnership, four women-owned cannabis companies will have their sponsorship fees waived and several more will showcase their products and brands at no cost in the Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference exhibit hall.
Americans for Safe Access (ASA) is a large, well-established nonprofit with a long list of historic policy changes under its belt. Not only do they advocate for the rights of medical cannabis patients at the federal and state level, but they also built the world’s first international cannabis and cannabinoid institute. They also support healthcare professionals and patients by offering accredited training programs.
Picture by Americans for Safe Access
Become a Conscious Cannabis Advocate
There are many organizations whose mission is to work on social equity issues ranging from policy reform to racial justice. Including NuProject, located in Portland, which works to stimulate cannabis entrepreneurs BIPOC; the Oregon Managers Fund, which provides low-income applicants with money for marijuana worker permits; and the Last Prisoner Projecta national group that provides legal assistance to non-violent cannabis-related offenders, among others.
Recentlythe Last Prisoner Project with the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers have come together to create the Cannabis Justice Initiative, an initiative that aims to facilitate clemency and compassionate release for those who continue to languish behind bars because of cannabis. prohibition. Launched in the spring of 2021, the initiative recruits, trains and matches pro bono attorneys with clemency applicants and successfully helps secure releases.
In addition, Our Academy is a 501(c)(3) non-profit digital native mentorship program that helps freelancers BIPOC Cannabis Entrepreneurs and is “open to knowledge sharing and support from qualified social equity candidates, partners, and other communities disproportionately impacted and targeted by the war on drugs.”
Photo: Courtesy of Brett Jordan on Unsplash