MJBizMag May-June 2022 - 55

'Diamonds
in the Rough'
" S
How to hire cannabis
workers with
criminal records
By Solomon Israel
ocial equity " is the legal cannabis
industry's biggest buzz phrase these
days, with governments and companies
of all sizes paying homage to the idea that those most
harmed by the war on drugs-particularly people of
color-should be first in line to reap the economic
benefits of marijuana legalization.
One straightforward way to work toward that goal
is to hire employees who have past criminal records
for marijuana-related crimes.
Cannabis companies that go the extra mile to hire
such workers recommend:
* Spreading the word about job openings through
relevant community organizations.
* Carefully crafting job postings to welcome applicants
with criminal records.
* Tailoring job fairs and workshops to help those
applicants succeed.
Working to hire and train employees with convictions
can pay dividends in terms of experienced and
motivated workers, according to executives who have
hired staff members with previous legal troubles.
Kika Keith, founder and CEO of South Central
Los Angeles marijuana retailer Gorilla Rx Wellness
and a Minority Cannabis Business Association board
member, said about 10% of her employees were
previously incarcerated, and they bring valuable
experience to their roles.
" I think it's a ripe market waiting to be tapped
into, " Keith said. " All we had to do was teach the compliance
and the regulations, teach the policy side. "
" You're talking about diamonds in the rough, folks
who have relationships, have knowledge of the plant,
knowledge of how buying works. "
mjbizdaily.com | May-June 2022 55
https://mjbizdaily.com/small-scale-cannabis-social-equity-success-stories/ http://www.mjbizdaily.com

MJBizMag May-June 2022

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