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Will Canada's "Green Rush" Discriminate?

Last Updated Oct 18, 2018 at 11:30 am PDT

A man smokes cannabis while waiting in line at a government cannabis store Wednesday, October 17, 2018 in Montreal as the legal sale of cannabis begins in Canada.THE CANADIAN PRESS/Ryan Remiorz

So much for the meritocracy. When legal pot was just a hazy line on the horizon, a lot of people spent a lot of time picturing what the industry would look like. There were plenty of optimistic reports that women would dominate the cannabis industry.

There were even hopes for more representative boardrooms and executives, with women and men of all skin colours sharing the wealth in an industry that, by virtue of prohibition and necessity, had always been somewhat more equal than established businesses.

Then plans for legalization began to firm up, and reports began to look at how many billions of dollars would be up for grabs. And before you know it, the c-suites looked the same way they always have. Shocking, we know.

So, what happened to that optimistic dream of a pot industry that offered equality? In a word: Money. Can women and people of colour still reclaim their seats at the table? Yes, actually. We’ll tell you how it starts.



CityNews reporter Shauna Hunt has been working the marijuana beat for two years. She knows everyone. Now that it’s legal her latest project is a podcast taking listeners inside Canada’s newest industry and the culture that birthed it. The Legal Potcast launches next week, but you can hear a sneak preview and subscribe in advance right here.