I have always wanted a business of my own to pass down to my son, and at the same time help the people I love with career opportunities. When cannabis became legal to sell in Colorado I knew it was only a matter of time before Massachusetts (MA) would as well. When MA finally voted on it and overwhelmingly voted for it, I felt this could be our families opportunity to get into an industry where the sky was the limit and the amounts of opportunities it could bring our family were worth giving it a shot.
On June 1, 2021, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Amazon, Dave Clark, announced a monumental decision. Dave Clark publicly announced on the Amazon website that the company has revised their policies pertaining to drug testing. Amazon will no longer conduct drug tests that screen for marijuana. However, this policy does not apply to individuals whose jobs are regulated by the Department of Transportation.
Several months ago, the Governor of Michigan signed a Marijuana Expungements Bill, allowing people who have faced misdemeanor convictions prior to the state’s legalization of marijuana in 2018 to have the charges erased from their record. This “Clean Slate” legislation aims to help remediate cycles of poverty, job insecurity, and other long-term consequences that result from possessing a criminal record.
In November 2020, New Jersey became the 17th state to legalize marijuana. The marijuana industry is slowly growing and becoming accepted in New Jersey. Medical dispensaries started to open up, and it is likely weed sales will be legal for those 21 and up soon to follow.
I learned about the health benefits of cannabis and how it can help people with so many physical, emotional, and mental disparities which is what my brand, SvnCloudz is all about. My entire career has been based on helping others in any way possible. Cannabis is a positive, legal, and evolving industry that will give me a chance to help others.
The NFL is looking into research on the different effects of cannabis and cannabinoids on players. In 2020 they changed some of their drug testing policy to be less about punishment and more about education and helping their players. The goal is to find the effects of cannabis on athletes and how cannabis could be possibly used for pain management instead of opioids.
Holyoke Massachusetts has created an effective system to take advantage of the cannabis industry, but they are the exception, for the most part towns have created too many barriers to marijuana businesses making it very hard to succeed in MA – this requires state oversight and a potential reworking of the licensing process in order to fix. In addition this requires reeducation surrounding pot to make sure people are making laws based on facts, not opinions. I am skeptical that will happen under the current gubernatorial administration.
Cannabis companies should provide opportunities for professional growth and restorative justice. Furthermore, existing companies need to cut back on profits and directly re-distribute economic capital to employees, those impacted by the war on drugs, and especially those looking for ownership.
The outcome of the 2020 Election shows the continued support and trend of liberalizing cannabis regulations across the country.