As pot legalization spreads, women are working to crack the “grass” ceiling

One Colorado woman advocates training for skills like business-plan writing for those wanting to shift from the black market to legal market, and increased mentorship.

By Becky Bohrer, Associated Press

JUNEAU, Alaska — When Danielle Schumacher attended her first convention of marijuana activists about 15 years ago, she could count on one hand all the women in a room of older men.

The lack of diversity struck the then-college student, who remembers feeling out of place but also determined to make her mark.

“That feeling just really stuck with me that this isn’t going to last. This is going to shift in my lifetime, and I want to be part of that,” said the San Francisco-based Schumacher, who in 2014 co-founded THC Staffing Group, a recruitment firm that encourages a more diverse cannabis industry workforce.

As marijuana has become more mainstream, Schumacher has seen a gradual shift, with more women working in the industry. Women-centric groups focused on networking or providing a space for women curious about cannabis have proliferated, too.



Denver council task force digs into why businesses don’t want social pot consumption licenses, and how to fix that

So far only two businesses have applied for the necessary Designated Consumption Area license.

Felipe Crespo (left) and Cory Welkerle split a joint inside the International Church of Cannabis on S. Logan Street, April 4, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite) 420; marijuana; international church of cannabis; washington park west; kevinjbeaty; denver; denverite; colorado;
Felipe Crespo (left) and Cory Welkerle split a joint inside the International Church of Cannabis on S. Logan Street, April 4, 2017. (Kevin J. Beaty/Denverite)

CORRECTION: This story originally misidentified one of the rules about eligible locations for the licenses. The eligibility is determined by, among other things, distances from certain types of facilities like schools.

Back in November 2016, Denver voters passed Initiative 300, a measure intended to provide residents and tourists safe establishments to consume cannabis. But so far only two businesses have applied for the necessary  license, and only one business has it.

The Social Consumption Advisory Committee, headed by Councilwoman Kendra Black, has a put a task force together to investigate the reasons for the low turnout. While they’re aware of a handful of businesses that will soon apply for the Designated Consumption Area (DCA) license, a sharp decline in inquiries about obtaining the license begs the question: Why is it so underutilized?


In a Trump world, Colorado lawmakers hesitate to borrow against pot money for school construction

More marijuana tax money will go toward school construction starting next year, but the funds won’t go as far as they could have.

By Erica MeltzerChalkbeat

More marijuana tax money will go toward school construction starting next year, but the funds won’t go as far as they could have.

That’s because some lawmakers are nervous about borrowing against pot money when the industry faces an uncertain regulatory future. They removed a provision in a bipartisan bill that would have allowed the state to issue more debt for school construction and repay that debt with pot taxes. Their fear is that the state could end up on the hook for that debt if marijuana money went away.