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Lori Lightfoot to join panel at Chicago’s Cannabis Resource Fair

The free event will be held Saturday at the UIC Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt Road and will provided attendees with information about marijuana industry job opportunities and wiping pot-related convictions from criminal records.

Chicago mayoral candidate Lori Lightfoot speaks in Lightfoot’s Englewood field office on March 31, 2019. | Colin Boyle/Sun-Times
Chicago mayoral candidate Lori Lightfoot speaks in Lightfoot’s Englewood field office on March 31, 2019. | Colin Boyle/Sun-Times
Sun-Times Media

Mayor Lori Lightfoot will headline a panel discussion Saturday kicking off the city’s first Cannabis Resource Fair, where Chicagoans can learn about employment opportunities in the weed industry and the process for having pot-related offenses wiped from their records.

The free event, set for 10 a.m. at the UIC Forum, 725 W. Roosevelt, will feature 65 businesses, organizations and nonprofits working in and around the pot industry, according to a statement from the mayor’s office. Thirty-five of them will be accepting applications and resumes from attendees.

“Ensuring this emerging industry brings unprecedented economic and social benefits to our communities has been at the heart of our efforts since day one,” Lightfoot said.

“By working hand-in-hand with city and state officials, community advocates, and industry partners and providing residents with the resources they need to succeed, we can empower those interested in becoming the next employee, business owner or investor in Chicago’s newest industry,” she added.

The panel featuring Lightfoot will also include state Rep. Kelly Cassidy (D-Chicago), who spearheaded legalization efforts in Illinois, and Wanda James, who as founder and CEO of Simply Pure Dispensary in Denver was the first African American marijuana dispensary owner in the country.

James has worked to bolster social equity in the weed industry and create opportunities for victims of the drug war, which are both key aims of the legislation Cassidy sponsored.

The event will also feature panels and presentations discussing the city’s regulation of the state’s recreational marijuana law, as well as the expungement process the new law enabled to remove some marijuana-related convictions from criminal records.

Anyone interested in attending can register here.