Element 7 recently completed an Agreement with American actress, comedian, author, and television personality, Whoopi Goldberg, to lead our efforts in social justice reform, and education.
Reform and Education POWERED BY WHOOPI
With a career spanning four decades in film and television, Goldberg was at one time the world’s highest paid actress and has been nominated for 13 Emmy Awards. She is one of the world’s few entertainers to have won an Emmy Award, Grammy Award, Academy Award (Oscar), and Tony Award (EGOT). She was only the 2nd black woman in history to win an Academy Award (Oscar) for acting.
Element 7’s agreement with Whoopi sees her join the Element 7 team to build and launch an EQ HUB in Illinois – an ‘equity and equality’ driven hub for training, learning, operations, and social justice grown cannabis goods and products.
The EQ HUB would incubate and accelerate ideas and business plans for social equity workers and entrepreneurs in the State of Illinois. Element 7 hopes that the success of the EQ HUB will open the door for expansion in 2021 and beyond of the program.
Element 7 created history in 2019 when it hosted Fresno’s first ever Expungement Clinic with the Fresno Public Defender. The Expungement Clinic, held in partnership with the Fresno County Public Defender’s Office, NDICA (National Diversity and Inclusion Cannabis Alliance), and Element 7, paves the way for Fresno residents with minor drug related criminal records to enter the legal and licensed cannabis industry to gain meaningful employment, or as owners and investors.
Repairing Damaged Communities
Expungement clinics are part of the much needed reparative justice for the harms of cannabis prohibition, which targeted people of color and from marginalized communities. Volunteers from the Fresno County Public Defender’s Office were available at the Clinic to provide free legal assistance to Fresno residents with drug related criminal records, including Prop 64 and Prop 47. In the previous 2 years, the Public Defender had only expunged the records of 89 persons. In a single day we expunged 120 records! In addition, we handed out over 100 food bags, helped 40 people sign up to vote, and assisted 30 families to received food Stamps.
Carmen Romero, attorney with the Fresno Public Defenders Office Clean Slate Program said, “We encourage the community to come take advantage of the opportunity to clear their criminal convictions and begin the overcome the obstacles to better jobs, housing and other benefits.” This was the Fresno Public Defenders first expungement clinic in partnership with NDICA and Element 7 at the national and local level.