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Black and Brown Cannabis Guild helps individuals wipe the slate clean during National Expungement Week

gavel with expungement plate
Wikipedia
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Michigan has the most extensive clean slate law in the country, expunging misdemeanors seven years after sentencing and felonies 10 years after sentencing, or when that individual is released from incarceration.

The cannabis industry saw a boom in Michigan when recreational use was legalized in 2018. However, consultant and activist Denavviah Mojet said the industry response wasn’t what she expected.

“My earliest moments as an entrepreneur were full of shock because I was expecting to see people of color lining up and I didn’t meet those people…. So many people saw themselves in cannabis but were not because of the barriers," Mojet said.

Mojet went on to found the Black and Brown Cannabis Guild, where she’s working to close the diversity gap she said stems from the devastation of communities of color through the War on Drugs, who saw mass incarceration. In the midst of National Expungement Week, the Black and Brown Cannabis Guild will be making stops across Michigan, providing free background checks, legal consult and more to clear the slate of felonies or misdemeanors and open the gates for new entrepreneurs to take their seat at the table.

“For those looking at this through a justice and equity lens, we would expect that the very same people that we over-criminalize be apart of this new legal market," Mojet explained.

Michigan has the most extensive clean slate law in the country, expunging misdemeanors seven years after sentencing and felonies 10 years after sentencing, or when that individual is released from incarceration.

The Black and Brown Cannabis Guild has partnered with other cannabis companies like Fluresh in Grand Rapids to provide expungement resources all week. However, Mojet said action needs to move fast to get entrepreneurs of color in the door, which is why she's also partnering with Fluresh on a Five Accelerator Mentorship Program, which provides skill, knowledge and resources to community members seeking career opportunity through cannabis.

National Expungement week runs from Sept. 25 - October 2, 2021. For more information about expungement week resources, click here.

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