The rollout of the recreational marijuana industry in Massachusetts has been slow. And it has barely begun for two important sectors: minority entrepreneurs and residents of neighborhoods that have been disproportionately hurt by the war on drugs.
Those are people and places the new law was supposed to help. The law mandates equity programs to bring them into the business.
Take Mattapan, for example, on the southern end of Boston. More than 90 percent of the neighborhood’s residents are nonwhite. Three-quarters are black. The state says Mattapan residents were disproportionately arrested for possessing and selling pot when it was illegal.