CA Cannabis Company Launches Job Initiative to Support Social Equity

Lowell Herb Co. has launched a job initiative to support the reparative justice program for pardoned cannabis offenders.
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I took a recent trip to L.A. for the Cannabiz Expo and got the chance to check out Lowell Herb Co in a MedMen dispensary. I was impressed with their branding and products, and even more impressed to know that they are doing work to support social equity and restorative justice in the cannabis industry in California. I hope more companies take note of this intention and follow their lead.

Here is the full press release:

Lowell Herb Co., the fastest growing cannabis company behind the number one pre-roll in California, is expanding and hiring. Through its trailblazingSocial Equity and Reparative Justice Program*, special consideration will be given to recently pardoned, non-violent cannabis offenders and will offer a wide spectrum of resources to individuals hoping to enter the cannabis space at various levels.  CEO David Elias describes the ideal candidate as a motivated team member who will contribute to the day-to-day operations of the company in a dynamic way, adding that “We value hard work and dedication and we’re putting a strong emphasis on employing people negatively impacted by cannabis incarceration and those whose lives have been affected by cannabis convictions on their records.”*

To get the word out to a wider audience, Lowell unveiled abillboardnear the Men’s Central Jail and Twin Tower Correctional Facility (the sign is located on Daly St. north of Mission Road facing the 5 South Fwy.) announcing the jobs initiative and will be actively promoting the project on TV, radio, and online venues(LOWELLSMOKES.COM/JOBS).

Lowell has career opportunities across various fields and levels of expertise such as package design, sales, marketing, distribution, shipping and customer service.  Most of the jobs will be in Los Angeles, but there are also openings in the Bay Area, Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, and San Diego.

In addition, Lowell and its coalition of brand and retail partners, will offer internship roles in each division of its operations.  This structured approach to on-the-job training industry education and specialized career focus, will help propel interns to the next level when they enter the workforce.

Beginning later this year, Lowell will host a series of meet-up style workshops which will be open to the public and will offer panel discussions and intensive training sessions as a crash course introduction to participants hoping to obtain roles in the industry. “It’s our priority to establish programs such as these to give motivated, bright individuals a second chance, and allow them to participate in this thriving industry" said Elias.

Lowell Herb Co. supports the Marijuana Policy Project and is committed to improving peoples’ lives and providing employment to individuals and communities impacted by cannabis prohibition.

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The Lowell Herb Co is the fastest growing, most talked about cannabis brand in California and its signature product,Lowell Smokes*, a pack of pre-rolls, is currently the number one selling cannabis product in California, available in over 250 dispensaries and for delivery statewide through their partnership with Eaze. Lowell’s products have been seen on “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” and trending on social media, recently posted by  Bella Thorne, Chelsea Handler, Usher, Calvin Harris, NORE, Snoop Dogg, Sarah Silverman and many others.*

Vanity Fair recently described Lowell as “The California family of farms that grows organic cannabis for green-minded consumers who value premium goods and sophisticated design.” Lowell has been named “The most innovative cannabis farm in California” by Time Out LA, “Responsible organic farmers” by Cosmopolitan, “All American cannabis,” by Fox News, “An All-American farm reminiscent of another era” by NPR and “Genius” by High Times.


Cannabis Related Arrest Rates - United States

  • According to Federal data released last year,653,249** people were arrested for cannabis related acts in the U.S. in 2016.* 
  • That averages out to aboutone marijuana arrest every 48 seconds*.* 
  • Nationwide, African Americans are statistically almost four times as likely to be arrested for cannabis, although usage rates are about equal between whites and blacks. African Americans comprise only 12.4% of the US population.
  • In 2016, more people were arrested for marijuana possession than for all violent crimes combined, according to 2016 crime data released by the FBI last year.

*These numbers account for only 75% of agencies reporting this type of data.

Arrest Rates - California

  • In the state of California,7,949people were arrested for cannabis related felonies.
  • African Americans and Hispanics were the most-arrested demographic, accounting for4,658of the felony arrests, compared to2,076whites arrested.
  • The number ofmisdemeanorarrests for marijuana was5,861(20% minors).
  • Nearly14,000people were arrested in the state of California in2016for cannabis.

Incarceration Rates - California

  • In 2015, an estimated2,139people were arrested, convicted and incarcerated fornon-violent,marijuana-only offenses*.* 
  • The number of people incarcerated formarijuana-plus offenses(charges that included but were not limited to marijuana offenses) in 2015 was4,398*.*
  • In 2015,6,537people were jailed for cannabis related offenses in CA.
  • The average sentence for non-violent, marijuana only offenses in the state of California is 5.5 mos.
  • 24%of those jailed statewide for a cannabis related offense are African American, while African Americans make up only6%of the state population.
  • 30%of those jailed for cannabis related offenses in Los Angeles County are African American, yet only8%of county residents are African American.

Effects of Incarceration

  • A criminal record can reduce the likelihood of a callback or job offer by nearly 50%. The negative impact of a criminal record is twice as large for African American applicants. Criminal records can also affect housing, education and financial aid.
  • Infectious diseases are highly concentrated in corrections facilities: 15% of jail inmates and 22% of prisoners – compared to 5% of the general population – reported ever having tuberculosis, Hepatitis B and C, HIV/AIDS, or other STDs. There are also significant long-term health effects such as PTSD and mental illness.
  • Studies show that the children of inmates do less well in school and exhibit behavioral problems. In addition, women partnered with inmates suffer from depression and economic hardship.
  • Spending on prisons and jails has increased at triple the rate of spending on Pre‐K‐12 public education in the last 30 years. In 2012, the US spent $81 billion on corrections.
  • Incarceration negatively impacts communities for generations.