05-26-2018  8:52 pm      •     
The Skanner Report
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NEWS BRIEFS

Attorney General Forms Hate Crime Task Force

The task force will study hate-motivated crimes and review existing legal protections for victims ...

Portland Art Museum Celebrates Art Museum Day with Free Admission on May 25

Portland Art Museum joins art museums across North America, with great works of art and public programs ...

June Key Delta Community Center Hosts May Week ’18 Health Fair May 26

Event includes vision, glucose screenings, medication disposal and car seat installation ...

Mississippi Avenue Giving Tuesday

On Tuesday, May 22, 10 percent of proceeds from participating Mississippi Ave. businesses will go to SEI ...

Oregon advances with 11-1 run-rule victory over Kentucky

EUGENE, Ore. (AP) — DJ Sanders hit a grand slam in a seven-run second inning and the Oregon Ducks are headed to the women's College World Series after an 11-1 run-rule victory over Kentucky Saturday night in the deciding game of the Eugene Super Regional.Shannon Rhodes hit a solo home run...

Amtrak: No evidence injured passenger was in fight

RENO, Nev. (AP) — The family of a 22-year-old train passenger found severely injured next to railroad tracks in Truckee, California, suspects he may have been the victim of a hate crime, but Amtrak said Saturday that investigators have found no evidence of foul play.Aaron Salazar's family...

City aims to block release of dangerous psychiatric patients

LAKEWOOD, Wash. (AP) — The city that houses Western State Hospital, Washington's main psychiatric facility, is fighting to keep patients from being released into its boundaries.The News Tribune reports Lakewood on Monday approved a moratorium on city business licenses for new adult family...

Missing fisherman found by divers in submerged vessel

SEATTLE (AP) — The body of a missing fisherman was found by divers inside the sunken vessel, the Kelli J.The Coast Guard said Saturday that the body was found before the vessel was refloated by contractors in Willapay Bay on Friday.The Pacific County Sheriff's Office took the fisherman's...

OPINION

Racism After Graduation May Just Be What's on the Menu

Dr. Julianne Malveaux says that for our young millennials, racism is inevitable ...

Prime Minister Netanyahu Shows Limits of Israel’s Democracy

Bill Fletcher, Jr. on racial politics in Israel and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s uneven treatment of African immigrants ...

Golfing While Black Is Not a Crime

Grandview Golf Club asks five Black women to leave for golfing too slow ...

Discovering the Best of Black America in 2018

Dr. Benjamin F. Chavis discusses the DTU Journalism Fellowship & Scholarship Program ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Meeting draws people angry over fatal police shooting

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — More than 200 people turned out for a community meeting Saturday to protest the death of a young black man who was fatally shot by a Virginia police officer after he ran naked onto an interstate highway.Speakers at the meeting at Richmond's Second Baptist Church said...

The Latest: Family: Police need to handle people better

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — The Latest on the fatal police shooting of a naked and unarmed man in Richmond (all times local):5:16 p.m.Family and friends of a man who was fatally shot by Richmond police after running naked onto an interstate highway are calling on police to find non-lethal ways of...

White neighbor gets prison for harassing black family

EASTON, Pa. (AP) — A neighbor accused of harassing and using racial epithets against a black Pennsylvania family for years has been sentenced to prison.A Northampton County judge sentenced 45-year-old Robert Kujawa to the term Friday after a jury convicted him of ethnic intimidation,...

ENTERTAINMENT

Glenn Snoddy, inventor of fuzz pedal for guitarists, dies

MURFREESBORO, Tennessee (AP) — A recording engineer whose invention of a pedal that allowed guitarists to create a fuzzy, distorted sound most famously used by Keith Richards in the Rolling Stones' hit "(I Can't Get No) Satisfaction" has died.Glenn Snoddy was 96. His daughter Dianne Mayo...

Reaction to criminal charges filed against Harvey Weinstein

Reaction to rape and other criminal charges filed in New York on Friday against Harvey Weinstein:"I hope this gives hope to victims and survivors everywhere, that we are one step closer to justice. Because one win is a win for all of us." — Weinstein accuser Rose McGowan, to The Associated...

Vindication, triumph, also fear: Weinstein accusers react

NEW YORK (AP) — Watching the stunning images of Harvey Weinstein walking into a courthouse Friday in handcuffs, a detective on each arm, Louisette Geiss still felt a shiver of fear in reaction to the man who, she says, once cornered her and tried to physically force her to watch him...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

Klay Thompson score 35, Warriors force Game 7 in West finals

OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Klay Thompson hit nine 3-pointers and scored 35 points, the Warriors held James...

AP FACT CHECK: Trump on border stats _ and a Merkel mystery

WASHINGTON (AP) — Illegal border crossings, as President Donald Trump measures them, have gone up since he...

US Gulf Coast prepares as Alberto brings wind, rain north

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) — Florida, Alabama and Mississippi launched emergency preparations ahead of the...

Declassified US cables link Uribe to Colombia drug cartels

BOGOTA, Colombia (AP) — As Alvaro Uribe, Colombia's most powerful politician, was making his rise to the...

Ebola vaccinations begin in rural Congo on Monday: Ministry

KINSHASA, Congo (AP) — Ebola vaccinations will begin Monday in the two rural areas of Congo where the...

Israeli soldier badly wounded in West Bank arrest raid dies

JERUSALEM (AP) — The Israeli military says a soldier who was seriously wounded in action this week has...

By Christen McCurdy | The Skanner News

The Minority Cannabis Business Association and the Coalition of Communities of Color say a proposed 3 percent tax on cannabis sales in Oregon could bring as much as $3 million to minority communities, and may help people of color get started in the cannabis industry.

Portland’s city council voted in June to refer the tax to voters, who will decide in November whether to accept or reject it. Put forward by commissioner Amanda Fritz and written with help from the industry as well as city stakeholders, the proposed language mostly funnels money into drug and alcohol education, public safety investments (including increased DUII training for officers) – but also small businesses, specifically businesses owned by women and minorities.

“It’s really, for lack of a better term, a watershed moment in cannabis regulation,” said Jesce Horton, the cofounder of the Minority Cannabis Business Association, who was involved in the drafting of the tax. “When you look at what’s happening across the nation, people of color and the prosperity in the cannabis industry -- people aren’t seeing the benefit of cannabis regulation in their industry, in their neighborhood.”

Horton is African American and owns two cannabis businesses in Portland – a dispensary and a cultivation center. He estimates that just a fraction – between 5 and 10 percent – of the roughly 1,000 members of his organization, a nationwide trade group founded just last fall are people of color who work in the legal industry. Others are curious about getting into the industry or advocating for racial minorities who want to get involved.

Horton said his group is working on a study with the University of California investigating the demographics of the legal cannabis industry. He said while there is a perception that the industry is overwhelmingly White, right now there are no hard numbers available on who owns and works in the majority of legal recreational or medical businesses.

But decades’ worth of statistics – from Oregon and the United States as a whole – show racial minorities, in particular African Americans, Latinos and Native Americans have been arrested and incarcerated on marijuana-related charges at a much higher rate than Whites, despite survey data showing racial minorities may be less likely to use marijuana than their White counterparts.

Disparities persist even in jurisdictions where pot is now legal: in Colorado, which legalized marijuana in 2014, arrests of White teens on marijuana-related charges fell 10 percent between 2012 and 2014. But in the same time period, Latino teens were 20 percent more likely to get arrested on the same offenses, and arrests of African American teens went up 50 percent. Earlier this summer, Devontre Thomas, a Native American 19-year-old living on tribal land in Oregon, was threatened with federal prosecution on charges he tried to buy less a gram of marijuana on tribal land. (Federal prosecutors dropped the charges after the Willamette Week ran a cover story on Thomas’ case.)

While the fund is intended to support minority and women-owned businesses generally, Maggie Tallmadge, environmental justice coordinator for the Coalition of Communities of Color, said it addresses one of the potential barriers to entry in the cannabis industry: access to capital.

“It’s not sufficient to reduce the disparities that our communities are facing at the state and in the city, but we’re happy that the city started to take this direction,” Tallmadge said.

“When we look at prohibition, the people who were impacted weren’t necessarily smokers,” Horton told The Skanner. “It was also people who were seeing their family members get locked up. They should be able to see on the reverse end, the positive benefits.”

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