Pride Month is Lit: LGBTQ+ Experiences in the Cannabis Industry

Pride Month is Lit: LGBTQ+ Experiences in the Cannabis Industry
Photo by Pawel Czerwinski on Unsplash

 

June is here and with it comes a cause for celebration — LGBTQ+ Pride Month! The annual observance pays tribute to the famous Stonewall Uprising by honoring all LGBTQ+ persons for an entire month. Celebrations include everything from workshops and symposiums to parties and parades. It is a month to appreciate everyone in the LGBTQ+ community, acknowledge the history of the movement for gay rights, and push progress into the future. Cannabis — like gay culture — has been historically stigmatized, which provides the opportunity to work together across these different but similar cultural movements toward a more inclusive America.

 

The Tipping Point — How Pride Month Came to Be

The 1969 Stonewall Uprising (also known as the Stonewall Riots) is a significant event in LGBTQ+ history. As most are aware, the gay community was not always well received. For centuries, anyone identifying as LGBTQ+ was perceived to be abnormal. Homosexuality was even listed as a disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM)  until the American Psychiatric Association removed it in 1973. Historically, much of America perceived homosexuality as a disease, and the gay community was disproportionately mistreated.

 

Consequently, on the early morning of June 28, 1969, when New York City police raided a popular gay club called The Stonewall Inn, the queer community had had enough. Residents of the neighborhood and surrounding cities took to the streets for six days of protests outside The Greenwich Village establishment. These Stonewall Riots became the catalyst for Gay Rights movements throughout the world. Accordingly, it is with honor Pride Month is celebrated annually in June, the same month during which these momentous riots took place.

 

How Cannabis Supports the LGBTQ+ Community and Vice-Versa

The cannabis community has long shown support for the LGBTQ+ community as it reckons with the struggle for legalization and destigmatization. Along the same lines, cannabis culture would not have progressed as far had it not been for the strides made in the LGBTQ+ world. There have even been multiple studies that suggest the LGBTQ+ population consumes marijuana at a rate far higher than its heterosexual counterparts, indicating a sense of shared cultural identity associated with cannabis consumption.

 

With the significance of the cannabis movement to the LGBTQ+ community and vice-versa, it is salient to support cannabis brands that support the queer community in return. CoinMover, Dip Devices, and Sana Packaging are three companies that care about LGBTQ+ people and their causes.

CoinMover, a digital currency platform, has shown its support of the gay community through its proud appointment of Grif Murray as their Director of Creative Design.CoinMover, a digital currency platform, has shown its support of the gay community through its proud appointment of Grif Murray as their Director of Creative Design. Grif brings his 16 years of creative design and marketing to the marketing materials, graphics, public relations, and advertising aspects of CoinMover. His significance to the LGBTQ+ community is evident in his life and in his personal work. 

“I’ve been published in some LGTBQ+ magazines here in Georgia. I’m known for modeling for photographers that have a strong impact on the gay community… I’ve also been a voice for gay men that suffer from anxiety and depression. I’ve shared my journey through life helping gay men know they are not alone dealing with internal struggles with their sexuality. My artwork portrays my struggles as a gay male and with mental trauma.”  — Grif Murray

 

Dip Devices is a company that supports the LGBTQ+ population.Dip Devices is another company that supports the LGBTQ+ population. The main manner in which they do this is through their Social Impact Program. Customers can choose from a variety of select devices, and Dip Devices will then donate a portion of that purchase to the item’s applicable cause. For example, 1% of all Rainbow Dipper sales are donated to LGBTQIA+ communities. This money specifically goes to The Trevor Project, a well-known nonprofit dedicated to saving the lives of suicidal LGBTQ+ persons.

 

For more information on how Dip Devices provides support to social causes, you can visit their website here.

 

Sana Packaging's Director of Customer Engagement is Jill Kana, a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community.
Sana Packaging is another LGBTQ+ friendly company that prides itself on sustainability. Sellers of sustainable cannabis packaging, the company’s Director of Customer Engagement is Jill Kana, a proud member of the LGBTQ+ community. Kana identifies as a lesbian and goes by the pronouns “she,” “her,” and “they.” Kana is an avid fisherwoman who participates in local river cleanups. Kana says she feels “lucky to be part of a team and industry that is very forward-thinking.” For Kana, the cannabis industry “has been very accepting and ready to embrace diversity.” For more information on how Sana Packaging is changing the cannabis packaging game, visit them here.

 

Spark a Joint & A Movement While Celebrating Pride Month

With June in bloom and rainbows in the air, spend some time appreciating the freedom that the gay rights movement has provided for so many of us. Like many LGBTQ+ folks, you’ll likely want to enjoy some cannabis as part of that celebration! Well, go for it! After all, LGBTQ Pride and cannabis culture have long been fast friends, working joint-in-hand to stomp out stigma. So why not join the fight? Grab a friend, grab some cannabis, and show the world how to celebrate Pride!

 

If you’d like to learn more about the LGBTQIA+ community, here are some organizations and nonprofits worth exploring:

  • It Gets Better Project — created to remind youth that life isn’t always as bad as it is right now.
  • GLAAD — provides insight into LGBTQIA+ in various forms of media
  • GLSEN — aims to end bullying of LGBTQIA+ youth
  • PFLAG — offers support for LGBTQIA+, their families, and their allies
  • Human Rights Campaign — works on all equality issues including the LGBTQIA+ community

 

You can also review some of our other blog posts on related topics such as The Cannabis Industry Needs Cultural Diversity in the Workplace and Why Being An Advocate Matters In The Cannabis Industry.

For those actively advocating for social equity in the cannabis space, feel free to reach out to us. We also offer pro bono services to help promote your contributions to justice in the marijuana industry.

Haley has her Bachelor's in Integrated Studies and is currently pursuing her Master's in Business Administration with a management focus. She lives in Connecticut with her husband and dog. In her free time, she enjoys writing poetry and watching tv.