City Of Portland To Host First Ever Cannabis Empowerment Day For Industry And Community

The City of Portland’s Office of Community and Civic Life’s Cannabis Program invites you to Chapman Square on Friday, Aug. 12, to celebrate the important contributions the cannabis community has made for the City of Portland. Local and state officials are expected to attend and speak, cannabis businesses and grant recipients will exhibit their work, and community will gather to listen to music and network.

The City of Portland’s Cannabis Program is leading with equitable, innovative policies and programs to help Portland’s craft cannabis industry thrive. Cannabis Empowerment Day will bring together cannabis industry professionals, community leaders, policy advocates, and the public to celebrate and destigmatize Portland’s extraordinary cannabis community.

Attendees can enjoy a free prize raffle, a free movement session lead by TAE.logic Fitness, delicious free food from Miss’ipi Chef , music and more from our fantastic vendors!

City of Portland’s First Ever Cannabis Empowerment Day

Join the City of Portland, cannabis business owners, policy makers, and advocates to celebrate our community and acknowledge the advancements they have made together. Both city and state officials are expected to attend and speak.
Cannabis Empowerment Day is Oregon’s first community-centered celebration, and local and state officials are expected to attend and speak, and cannabis businesses and grant recipients will exhibit their work and network.
One of the main focuses of Cannabis Empowerment Day is to build community. The event will have 20 available prizes for raffles, live music and opportunities to network.
The event is FREE but registration is required to be automatically entered into the raffle.

The City of Portland’s Cannabis Program

The City of Portland’s Office of Community and Civic Life is where the Cannabis Program is housed. The Cannabis Program has made incredible progress using cannabis tax revenue where it is needed most. Two programs that the program has put together are the CERF and SEED programs. Recipients from these programs will be in attendance at the event.

City of Portland’s Cannabis Program: SEED and CERF Initiatives

The Social Equity & Educational Development (SEED ) Initiatives is a grant program that prioritize BIPOC- and women-led small business initiatives that support economic and educational development of BIPOC communities. In this program, 3% of recreational cannabis tax revenue is going back into the community to support people most impacted by past cannabis prohibition. Most recently, the City Council approved an additional $1 million in funding for several SEED grant recipients.


Jardima Kroeker is the Executive director of OERP. She said, “Having a criminal record creates harmful barriers for people seeking employment and housing,” said Jardima Kroeker, executive director of Oregon Expungement Relief Project. “Over the last year we have filed over 250 motions to expunge almost 500 criminal charges for our clients with the help of our legal partner at Emerge Law Group and the direct support of the Social Equity & Educational Development Grant through the Office of Community & Civic Life’s Cannabis Program.”

The Cannabis Emergency Relief Fund (CERF) is the first-of-its-kind in the country. This allowed Civic Life’s Cannabis Program to allocate $1.33M in umbrella grants to three community partners — NuProject, The Initiative and the Oregon Cannabis Association — to support and stimulate emergency relief grants for cannabis business and individuals. Applications opened and closed in 24 days because the need was overwhelming.


David Fuegy is the owner of Rip City Delivery. He said, “Programs such as this are a fantastic and cost-effective tool to help support small businesses such as us. It’s really the most competitive retail environment in the whole country in Portland, I think,” said David Fuegy, owner of Rip City Delivery. “I strongly encourage the City Council to continue to pursue such initiatives as the Cannabis Emergency Relief Fund. It turned out to be crucial for our survival.”

Cannabis Reinvesting in Communities

For some of Portland’s 389 cannabis businesses, grants from the City’s $1.33 million Cannabis Emergency Relief Fund (CERF) helped keep their doors open and bring back employees. For individuals, it meant paying their bills and childcare. Federal prohibition of cannabis means people in the industry are ineligible for federal or state-administered relief for the impacts of COVID-19, vandalism, theft, and wildfires.

At the July 28 City Council session, Council unanimously approved another $456,901 for CERF to help support even more cannabis businesses and employees. These funds come from the 3% retail sales tax on cannabis. 

Council also approved $1 million in funding for ten Social Equity & Education Development (SEED) Grant recipients. Since 2017, the SEED Grant Fund has awarded more than $4.3 million to more than 40 grant recipients.

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