Search Results for: social equity

Oregon Cannabis Social Equity Bill Introduced

OREGON:  Repairing the harm from decades of inequity from the War on Drugs is the goal of the Cannabis Social Equity Act introduced this week by a coalition of legislators in the Oregon State Legislature. HB 3112 is the culmination of months of work led by former State Rep. Akasha Lawrence Spencer including numerous cannabis companies, the NuLeaf Project, the Oregon Cannabis Association, the Oregon Retailers of Cannabis Association, the City of Portland, Urban League, and law students from Willamette University.

“We came together with a common purpose – to undo and repair some of the harm caused by cannabis criminalization on Black, Indignenious and Latinx communities in Oregon,” said Rep. Lawrence Spence. “This legislation uses cannabis tax revenue to invest in Oregonians who have been unjustly targeted for decades by law enforcement, in an effort to repair some of the generational harm done to their communities.”

Chief sponsors of HB 3112 include Representatives Janelle Bynum, Ricki Ruiz, Mark Meek, Julie Fahey and Senators Lew Frederick and Kayse Jama. Current sponsors include Representatives Karin Power, Pam Marsh and Maxine Dexter.

Jeanette Ward Horton, executive director of NuLeaf Project, has been working with the coalition since its inception eight months ago. NuLeaf Project receives funding from City of Portland cannabis tax revenues and private donations to aid cannabis start up companies with funds, technical assistance and job placement/training.

“We’ve seen the harm to far too many families to not address this issue. Cannabis convictions bring challenges that ripple through families and cause hardship for the children of children whose parents were disproportionately arrested. The loss of jobs, education grants, housing and more that can all stem from a minor cannabis conviction have impacted communities of color for generations. Today Oregon has the chance to undo some of that harm,” said Ward-Horton.

The bill contains three major provisions:

  • Direct investment in cannabis businesses owned by Black, Indigenious, and Latina/o/x people, as well as people convicted of cannabis crimes. Creates investment in home and land ownership, job training, health care, education and other areas determined by the Cannabis Equity Board.
  • Free, automatic expungement of eligible cannabis criminal convictions paid for by cannabis tax revenues as needed. Previous legislation saw less than 200 of 28,000 eligible Oregonians successfully complete expungement.
  • Equity licenses for Black-, Indigenous-, and Latina/o/x  owned cannabis companies with reduced fees and modified requirements to initially qualify. Provides for funding of two OLCC positions to aid in the licensure process, and includes the addition of three license types beneficial for the small businesses owner.

Chief Sponsor and State Rep. Ricki Ruiz said fixing the expungement process is a critical piece of the legislation.

“Less than 200 out of 28,000 Oregonians eligible for expungement were able to successfully complete the process in the past two years. We need to do better,” said Ruiz. “This bill provides us the path and the funding we need to efficiently remove previous cannabis crimes from people’s records and provide them the opportunity to repair their lives from the harm caused by cannabis criminalization. It is a critical step toward restoring the health of these individuals and the communities where they reside.”

Gabe Parton Lee, General Counsel at Wyld, spearheaded the design of the automatic expungement process

“What we clearly see is that those left in the destructive wake of cannabis prohibition have been helped the least by cannabis legalization. Instead, we see a rapidly-growing industry that has largely left behind people and communities who disproportionately suffered under cannabis criminalization,” said Parton Lee, general counsel for Wyld. “We are advocating for the use of cannabis tax dollars to help correct some of these long standing issues of inequity and provide for direct investment into people and neighborhoods most impacted by cannabis prohibition.”

State Rep. Julie Fahey helped drive the creation of the bill when she passed legislation in 2019 calling for a work group to develop a cannabis social equity program.

“This effort has brought together a diverse group of advocates, business owners, and industry partners to develop one of the most comprehensive equity bills in the country – breaking down barriers for BIPOC Oregonians and investing in the communities most harmed by cannabis criminalization. The cannabis industry is a driver of economic opportunity for entrepreneurs in our state, and this bill will help ensure that those harmed by the war on drugs have access to those opportunities,” said Fahey.

A coalition of cannabis companies and trade groups including the Oregon Cannabis Association, the Oregon Industry Progress Association, and the Oregon Retailers of Cannabis Association have all united around this legislation as the key cannabis related bill for the 2021 session. Major sponsors include Groundworks industries, Wyld, Wana and Dutchie with dozens of other cannabis companies, law firms and others supporting the effort.

Michigan’s Marijuana Regulatory Agency Social Equity Program Announces October Education and Outreach Session

MICHIGAN: The Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) has announced the date, time, and location for its October Education and Outreach Session.

Date:     Tuesday, October 20, 2020
Time:    10:00 AM
Place:   Zoom

While attendance is free, space is limited. Interested participants need to register for  the Education and Outreach Session at the following website:

On November 1, 2019, the MRA began accepting applications for licensure under the Michigan Regulation and Taxation of Marihuana Act (MRTMA), for a marijuana retailer, marijuana processor, class B marijuana grower, class C marijuana grower, or marijuana secure transporter, from persons holding a state operating license pursuant to the Medical Marihuana Facilities Licensing Act (MMFLA).

On October 6, 2020, the MRA issued a bulletin announcing that on March 1, 2021, applications will then be accepted from any applicant for the following adult-use licenses:

  • marijuana retailer
  • marijuana processor
  • class B marijuana grower
  • class C marijuana grower
  • marijuana secure transporter

The Education and Outreach Session will highlight all the adult-use licenses that will be available to any applicant beginning on March 1, 2021. The MRA Enforcement Section will also be in attendance to provide information on the required inspections of marijuana establishments.

Representatives from the MRA’s social equity team and Enforcement Section will be holding a question and answer session following their presentations.

The Zoom link to attend the October Education and Outreach event will be sent to participants who register.

WASHINGTON: WSLCB Schedules Social Equity Virtual Meetings

WASHINGTON: The Liquor and Cannabis Board (LCB) wants to hear from people in communities of color regarding experiences and concerns when it comes to working within the cannabis system.

Please join LCB Member Ollie Garrett and members of the LCB’s executive leadership for a virtual community meeting.

In order to gain a broad perspective that represents the feelings and experiences about the current cannabis system held by those from communities of color, the LCB has scheduled three virtual meetings.

During these meetings, you will be encouraged to share your thoughts, and the LCB will update you on the upcoming work of the Task Force. The LCB will also provide clarification of the roles of the LCB, the Social Equity Task Force, and the Legislature and Governor when it comes to the Social Equity Task Force.

This is your opportunity to:

  • Speak to the LCB about your experience trying to obtain a cannabis license.
  • Learn about the Social Equity Task Force and new cannabis retail licenses.

When and How

The LCB will host three separate virtual meetings, beginning Tuesday evening.

  • Tuesday, September 29, 2020  5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
  • Monday, October 5, 2020   1:00 – 4:00 p.m.
  • Monday, October 12, 2020   1:00 – 4:00 p.m.

Each meeting will cover the same information. It is only necessary to attend one session. Due to health and safety restrictions, these community events will be online only. Register for the meeting that you can attend by clicking the link below, entering the requested information and the password provided.

To learn more and register for any of the events go to lcb.wa.gov/socialequityevents

Eaze Announces Major Expansion Of Social Equity Menu In Los Angeles

Menu expansion promotes Black-owned cannabis brands, establishes industry-leading support for equity license holders, and encourages conscious consumption

CALIFORNIA: Eaze, California’s largest marketplace for legal cannabis, today announced expanded efforts to support an equitable cannabis industry: A major menu expansion in Los Angeles featuring Black and POC-owned brands, and the Social Equity Partners Program, a multi-point initiative to assist and elevate equity license holders.

Eaze’s Social Equity Partners Menu, which already features well-recognized brands Cloud 9, KGB Reserve, and SF Roots in Northern California, is debuting all of its equity brands in the greater Los Angeles market and welcoming LA-based Dreamt, Blaqstar Farms, and Bay Area-based James Henry SF and Oakland Extracts to the menu.

The menu makes it easy for consumers to support a diverse industry, and address the War on Drugs’ disproportionate effects on the BIPOC community, by putting their dollars toward these brands. Customers can simply visit Eaze.com to order products, which range from unique flower to prerolls to a sleep-aid vape pen.

In a first move for the cannabis industry, Eaze announced its multi-point Social Equity Partners Program, which provides brands with financial and operational support to help them scale and succeed on Eaze and beyond. Specifically, Social Equity Partners are eligible for a variety of benefits, including:

  • Preferred financing and payment structuring
  • Discounted access to Eaze Partner Portal data
  • Incorporation into the Eaze supply chain
  • Marketing and public relations support

Brands on Eaze’s Social Equity Menu must either hold a social equity license, or be actively engaged in the application process for an equity license in a city or county. Since Eaze launched its equity menu in the Bay Area market, social equity brands have been well received by consumers with high and consistent demand. To date, social equity brands have sold nearly $1M of products on the Eaze platform.

“We’re proud to offer these incredible brands industry-leading terms that support their growth by addressing chronic small business challenges that include access to capital, tight cash flow, and customer education,” said Darius Kemp, Eaze’s Head of Equity and Change. “Shopping these brands is one of the best ways consumers can support equity and consume conscientiously.”

“Consumers are more thoughtful than ever about the products they consume and ensuring they come from a brand that aligns with their values, and cannabis is no exception,” said LA-based Blaqstar Farms’ Founder and CEO Bryant Mitchell. “Eaze is an exceptional partner for Black-owned cannabis brands, allowing us to step into the spotlight and reach consumers who not only want a fantastic product but want to know their dollars are going towards a new generation of Black cannabis entrepreneurs.”

Eaze’s equity menu includes:

  • Blaqstar Farms: The son of the first Black police officer in the city of Orange, Texas, Bryant Mitchell grew up and saw many peers, family members and friends lost to and affected by the War on Drugs. It wasn’t until 2001, after he graduated college and went into consulting in the Bay Area, that he became immersed in cannabis and saw the results of pain relief and so many other benefits. These professional and life experiences led Bryant to establish Blaqstar Farms in 2012 in Los Angeles. A selection of Blaqstar Farms products, including premium flower The Glue, Thin Mint and Orange Rose to prerolls Boss OG, Doc OG, Super Sour and F3, are available the week of September 14 on Eaze.
  • Cloud9: Degi Simmons, founder of Oakland-based Cloud9, has been involved in cannabis commerce and culture since the earliest days of Proposition 215. As a beneficiary of Oakland’s Koncepts Cultural Gallery, an organization promoting art and education funded by Better Us dispensary, Degi partnered with cultivator and DJ Clayton Whitaker to form Cloud9 in 2010. A selection of Cloud9 flower, featuring Sour Diesel for sativa and Runtz for indica, are now available on Eaze.
  • Dreamt is an award-winning science-backed sleep aid created by Carolina Vazquez Mitchell, a nationally recognized cannabis scientist. Dreamt’s 45-night pen and 30-night tincture contain THC, CBD, melatonin, valerian root, and terpenes, and are now available on Eaze.
  • James Henry SF: Co-founders Henry Alston and James Victor are on a mission to improve the stigma surrounding cannabis consumption through quality branded products and Black entrepreneurship. By partnering with accomplished medical doctors and scientists who understand the medical value of endocannabinoid therapy, James Henry SF promotes responsible consumption for a responsible lifestyle. A selection of James Henry SF flower, including hybrids Donnie B and True Ryder and social flower Lemon Jack and Tropical Slice, are now available on Eaze.
  • KGB Reserve: KGB stands for killer green bud, the main ingredient used in all of their products. As a self funded equity company based out of Oakland, KGB Reserve is grateful for its place in the legal cannabis space. They stand for unity and believe in equality. Currently known for their top shelf infused products, KGB Reserve has consistently been on Eaze’s list of top 10 pre-roll brands in the Bay Area since its launch. KGB Reserve’s Sauce Pen, Bambino and Torpedo products are now available on Eaze.
  • Oakland Extracts: Oakland Extracts, a Black-owned business, began as a way to bring the community together. Founders Terryn Niles Buxton and Aaron Tran saw prices climbing with legalization and realized there was a need for people in Oakland to have access to quality cannabis at an affordable price. Over the years, they fine-tuned a proprietary technique that allows for maximum terpene retention. Oakland Extracts’ Red Congolese Cookie Crumble Wax is now on Eaze.
  • SF Roots: Founder and CEO Morris Kelly started in the cannabis industry 13 years ago making edibles under Proposition 215 for local collectives, then launched Greencuredelivery cannabis delivery service in 2015. “Equity is about leveling the playing field for companies who paved the way for this economic green rush,” said Kelly. “We’re this industry’s originators, it’s about getting consumers to support equity brands every day. We are partnering with Eaze to ensure that happens.”

Eaze has long worked to help build a more equitable cannabis industry. With access to capital serving as one of many barriers for new entrepreneurs in the space, Eaze launched Momentum—a business accelerator to cultivate the growth and success of underrepresented cannabis business founders—in September 2019. Eaze’s social impact work also includes a partnership with Code for America to help clear 250,000 low level criminal offenses; a permanent 25% discount for U.S. veterans; partnerships with Success Centers SF and the San Francisco AIDS project; and a $25,000 contribution to the NAACP, among others.

To learn more about Eaze’s Social Equity Partners Program, read our latest blog from Darius Kemp.

LA Black & Brown Leaders Condemn ‘Power Play’ Undermining Social Equity & Community Reinvestment In New Cannabis Licensing

Community Leaders Claim Rushed Move Undermines Original Criminal Justice & Community Reinvestment Intent of LA’s Cannabis Licensing Policy

CALIFORNIA:  A broad cross section of community leaders spoke in front of the Los Angeles City Council Chambers on Tuesday, March 5, 2019, strongly condemning efforts to rush Phase 3 of the cannabis licensing process in the City as one that cripples progress on social equity, criminal justice, and community reinvestment in communities of color. Citing the original intent of the landmark policy as one that would ensure social equity and community reinvestment by affirmatively supporting the training, preparation and incubation of community owned businesses and create a level playing field, leaders rejected the rush to move Phase 3 as an effort to undermine the progressive policy. Of top most concern is that after two years of discussions, and issuing over 1,000 licenses in the City of LA, there is still no funded Social Equity Program. The leaders discussed the need for the City to do more to protect first time applicants from the predatory business practices and large exclusion of key communities that abounded in Phase 2.

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The group specifically called on the three members of the Rules Committee, Council President Herb Wesson, President Pro Tempore Nury Martinez, and Council member Marqueece Harris-Dawson, who voted to advance the new recommendations, to uphold their commitment to the broader community and delay Phase 3. As it stands, today’s Rules Committee vote on the new recommendations will go to a rushed vote by the full City Council this Friday, which if passed, would instruct the City Attorney to draft an ordinance to move the policy forward for final passage next week. While last week the City was considering a merit based process for Phase 3 after technical assistance and business support is issued, today they were railroading a proposal to immediately begin Phase 3 licensing on a first come first serve basis. Also of concern is language that allows for a back door buy out after 3 years, essentially allowing social equity applicants to serve as “strawmen” for the investors.

In addition to concerns about the specific policies in the approved Recommendations, stakeholders expressed confusion about the sudden rush on the timing. Just two weeks ago, the Department of Cannabis Regulation held a stakeholder meeting on the future of social equity in LA, where Director Cat Packer and Council Members Wesson and Harris-Dawson each addressed the group and invited stakeholders to help them craft Phase 3 in a way that would truly advance the social equity aims. Most of the stakeholders who rushed to City Hall at 8:30 in the morning Tuesday, with less than 12 hours notice, have not finished offering advice and proposals for Phase 3. After waiting years, even decades, for cannabis licensing, why this last minute rush?

Community leaders in the regional cannabis community spoke categorically on the matter issuing the following statements:

  • Bo Money, Executive Director of the National Diversity and Inclusion Cannabis Alliance (NDICA), said: “This is not the time to rush a process through that undermines the intent of creating an equitable and fair industry. This is a major move that will further ensure that licenses are are primarily awarded to the wealthy investors and lobbying groups.”
  • Felicia Carbajal, Smart Pharm Research Group said: “To maintain the integrity of the spirit of the social equity ordinance, the City must immediately engage in impactful education and outreach to impacted communities, and address community reinvestment and corporate social responsibility.”
  •  Cheryll Branch, Green Believers said: “This move only benefits one group of well funded corporate interests and makes it extremely difficult for small black owned shops to compete for licensing.”
  •  Arturo Carmona, ImpreMedia said:“Rushing the licensing process without building out social equity programming all but ensures Latino exclusion in this critically important new market for the city. Despite being the largest population in the City, Latinos are facing numerous barriers to gain inroads in the industry, one that offers great promise for job and wealth generation in our communities.”
  • Freeway Ricky Ross, former kingpin and NDICA- National Diversity and Inclusion Cannabis Alliance Board Member said:  “As a South L.A native and someone who was severely impacted by on the war on drugs, I am very disturbed by this farce that the city of LA is calling a Social Equity Plan. This is pure disrespect and a slap in the face to our communities of POC and “REAL social equity applicants that are now being blocked by our City Council from an opportunity we have been waiting years for. It is time for our communities stand up and fight! We have been sold out too many times and THIS will be the LAST time!

Stakeholders plan to spend the rest of the week visiting council offices in an effort to defeat Friday’s vote.

 

Criminalized To Capitalized: Social Equity Pilot Program Seeks Aspiring Cannabis Business Owners With Past Cannabis Convictions

CALIFORNIA: Largely missing from California’s booming new legal cannabis industry are millions of potential cannabis entrepreneurs systematically criminalized by the war on drugs, according to Los Angeles management consulting firm Seira, which today announced a search for participants in its Pilot Program for Cannabis Social Equity.

Participants in this Pilot Program will receive mentorship, training, and access to business development resources, preparing each cannabis entrepreneur to begin the process of Los Angeles city licensure as early as August, 2018. Funding and licensure are among the most significant obstacles for entrepreneurs affected by cannabis criminalization, according to Seira founders Steven Vasquez and Simone Cimiluca-Radzins.

Survivors of systematic cannabis criminalization are invited to attend a seminar in Mid-City  Los Angeles on July 19, 2018, from 6:30 to 8:30 PM, in order to learn if they may qualify for this Pilot Program. Seira is seeking applicants who reside in South Los Angeles, have experienced a cannabis-related criminal conviction, and are considered low-income.

As cannabis legalization sweeps the country and billions of dollars pour into marijuana business, people of color remain shut into prison and shut out of wealth. Black Americans are 3.5 times more likely than whites to be arrested for cannabis consumption, though the U.S. Census Bureau finds cannabis consumption rates are nearly identical across racial lines. Meanwhile, Black Americans own only about 1% of the nation’s thousands of legalized storefront marijuana dispensaries, according to a 2016 investigative report by Buzzfeed.

The disproportionate impact of cannabis criminalization on Los Angeles’s low-income and marginalized residents aroused the concern of the Los Angeles City Council, which passed a motion in June of 2017 directing the city to develop a Social Equity Program to decrease disparities in life outcomes for marginalized communities and address disproportionate impacts of the war on drugs in those communities. Seira’s Social Equity Pilot Program, designed by entrepreneurs within and outside the cannabis industry, will achieve these goals by shepherding entrepreneurs through the entire process of launching their cannabis businesses.

Michigan Marijuana Regulatory Agency Announces Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Workgroup

MICHIGAN:  The Marijuana Regulatory Agency (MRA) is facilitating a standing Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Workgroup (DEIW) to continue to advance the proposals of the ad hoc Racial Equity Advisory Workgroup, to empower stakeholders to take ownership in the programs that directly impact their communities, and to continue to guide the Agency on issues related to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

This workgroup is to be held on the last Friday of every month.  Term length will not exceed 24 months.  The terms of the members will be staggered with new members accepted every 8 months.

Individuals interested in participating in the workgroup must send an email to MRA-SocialEquity@michigan.gov with WORKGROUP in the subject line – the body of the email must contain the following information:

  • Your name
  • Mailing address
  • Email address
  • Phone number
  • Occupation
  • Job title
  • The name of the employer or organization that you are affiliated with
  • A brief explanation (no more than 250 words) describing what diversity, equity, and inclusion means to you and the perspective you believe you can bring to this group. Please do not include attachments with your email

The Agency will consider all email requests that meet these requirements, and any additional relevant information when establishing the workgroup. Requests and inquiries made via telephone or to other Agency contacts may not be accepted.

The deadline to email your request to participate in the workgroup is Friday, January 29, 2021 at 5:00 PM. Selections for the workgroup will be announced by Friday, February 12, 2021. If you are chosen for a workgroup, you will be notified directly by the Agency.

Mass Cannabis Control Commission To Host “Cannabis x Equity” Panel As Part Of Fierce Urgency of Now Festival

MASSACHUSETTS: The Cannabis Control Commission (Commission) is proud to again partner with the Greater Boston Chamber of Commerce and City Awake as part of their 2020 Fierce Urgency of Now (FUN) Festival by hosting a virtual panel titled “Cannabis x Equity” on Friday, September 18 at 1:00 p.m.

Interested individuals—especially those who have been disproportionately impacted by previous cannabis prohibition, arrests, and incarceration—are invited to register to attend through Eventbrite.

The panel, which will be emceed by the Commission’s Interim Director of Community Outreach Alyssa Flores, will provide attendees with a deeper understanding of Massachusetts’ regulated cannabis industry, the Commission’s equity programming, and entrepreneurial opportunities that are available in the evolving marketplace. Additionally, Friday’s conversation will help establish new connections to Commission staff and community members who are pursuing similar types of engagement in legal marijuana.

FUN “Cannabis x Equity” panelists will include participants of the Commission’s first-in-the-nation Social Equity Program and certified Economic Empowerment Priority Applicants, as well as Marijuana Establishment owners and founders who have been certified as “Minority-Owned Businesses” through the Commonwealth’s Supplier Diversity Office.

The Commission’s mission is to honor the will of Massachusetts voters by safely, equitably and effectively implementing and administering the laws enabling access to medical- and adult-use marijuana. Equity provisions have been enacted to fulfill a legislative mandate that the Commission ensures people from communities disproportionately harmed by marijuana law enforcement are included in the legal industry. More information about the agency’s equity programming is available at MassCannabisControl.com/EquityPrograms.

Peter Thiel’s Fund Invests In Marijuana Equity Firm

WASHINGTON:  Peter Thiel, one of the early investors in Facebook, Lyft and Spotify, is turning his attention to marijuana.

Founders Fund announced Thursday that it has made a multi-million-dollar investment in Privateer Holdings, the world’s first private equity firm investing exclusively in the legal cannabis market. Founders Fund is backed by Peter Thiel, a co-founder of PayPal. Founders Fund has more than $2 billion in assets under management.

“Founders Fund is known for making some of the most lucrative and radically transformational investments of the past decade,” Privateer Holdings CEO Brendan Kennedy said in announcing the deal. “With this investment they are signaling that they, like us, believe that the end of prohibition and the social harms it causes is inevitable.”

 

DC Council Chairman Mendelson Introduces Equitable Recreational Cannabis Legislation

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA:  DC Council Chairman Phil Mendelson – along with Council members Kenyan McDuffie, Charles Allen, Brianne Nadeau, Brooke Pinto, Christina Henderson, and Mary Cheh – introduced the most comprehensive, progressive, and equitable legislation to regulate the sale of recreational Cannabis in the District of Columbia.

“This legislation is the culmination of over a year of work by my office and external stakeholders,” Mendelson said. “It creates a comprehensive regulatory framework for the cultivation, production, and sale of recreational cannabis and most significantly, this bill centers reinvestment and opportunity for people and communities hit hardest by the War on Drugs.”

The “Comprehensive Cannabis Legalization and Regulation Act of 2021” differs from previous iterations of recreational marijuana sales bills in that it establishes:

  1. A Social Equity program that mandates at least half of all licenses to be set aside for Social Equity applicants (defined as residents who have been previously convicted of cannabis-related offenses or have lived ten of the last 20 years in areas with high rates of poverty, unemployment and arrests);
  2. A Cannabis Equity and Opportunity Fund to provide financial assistance to Social Equity applicants. This is especially important given that traditional financing options are unavailable for cannabis and especially difficult for social equity applicants. Thirty percent of tax revenues from cannabis sales would be deposited into this fund;
  3. A Community Reinvestment Program Fund that would provide grants to organizations addressing issues such as economic development, homeless prevention, youth development and civil legal aid in areas hardest hit by the drug wars. Fifty percent of tax revenues from cannabis sales would be deposited into this fund;
  4. A robust public education campaign that will inform District residents of the law and focus on responsible use and harm reduction strategies for residents of legal age who consume cannabis;
  5. Automatic expungement of cannabis-related arrests and convictions, and opportunities for resentencing for individuals currently serving sentences for cannabis-related convictions;
  6. Protections for District residents who legally possess and consume cannabis pursuant to the Act so that they do not lose benefits, employment, or access to other critical resources; and
  7. Authorization for banks in the District to conduct business with cannabis licensees, and allowances for local tax deductions for cannabis licensee business expenses.