by Veronica Castillo
Photo credit: Black Cannabis Week
Connection to entrepreneurship, wellness, innovation, education, and more
Celebrated during the same week as National Expungement Week which I think is beautiful, Black Cannabis Week, also known as BCW, is: a collective web of educational and informational experiences to empower Black communities to move toward social and political change. They aim to educate, destigmatize, and advance the efforts of social justice and this is so needed!
This year, the first year that Black Cannabis Week was coast to coast, had a line of national experts, workshops, job fairs and more. There were 11 black speakers from various backgrounds and titles within the Cannabis community educating and informing. The goal was to teach/ inform about opportunities within the Cannabis industry, advise how to participate in the emerging industry, and a focus on topics aimed to educate and empower marginalized communities.
Did you know that this year, an analysis by the American Civil Liberties Union, found that black people are 3.64 times more likely than white people to be arrested for Cannabis possession, notwithstanding comparable usage rates? BCW says:
“Blacks in Cannabis have almost been ignored, except for the disproportionate arrest and incarceration statistics. The stigma of Cannabis transcends class, faith, education, and borders. Unfortunately, this stigmatization has restricted an inheritance of traditional practices and knowledge.”
On a mission and making it available to everyone, BCW offered free general admission with the option to donate. Many wonder why a focus on Black Cannabis Week, why a focus on black people, why so much awareness. If the answer isn’t yet obvious, check out what co-founder of BCW, Cherron Perry-Thomas had to say about “why”:
“The low levels of Black inclusion in the cannabis industry is less than 2% in the U.S. but, the arrest rates are disproportionately higher than whites. I was inspired to create Black Cannabis Week by old and new movements that demand Blacks are acknowledged and respected for our skills, innovations, culture and more”.