SXSW 2022

Puff, Puff, Pass: Equity in Cannabis Legalization


As the fastest-growing American industry, cannabis has offered new economic opportunities to people across the country, but for many, those opportunities are still out of reach. As more states legalize, crafting policies that help to create a fair and equitable cannabis industry has never been more important. Leafly’s Janessa Bailey has created a first-of-its-kind, state-by-state report measuring equity and justice within state cannabis legalization and identifies the 8 key policies that states must include to create the kind of markets that provide opportunities to all. As Leafly’s culture editor, Janessa has a unique perspective into policies that work-- and those that don’t-- and is a crucial voice as momentum around cannabis legalization continues to build.

Other Resources / Information


  1. Understand the racial inequities in access to cannabis -- particularly in cannabis company ownership and employment.
  2. Understand the role that the War on Drugs has played in the stark racial inequities of the history of cannabis.
  3. Unpack the eight critical strategies for equitable state legalization outlined in the Leafly Seeds of Change report.


  • Janessa Bailey, Culture Editor, Leafly


Marissa Sandgren, Associate Director, Bully Pulpit Interactive

Meta Information:

  • Event: SXSW
  • Format: Presentation
  • Track: Civic Engagement
  • Track 2
  • Level: Advanced

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