Multi-State, Vertically Integrated National Cannabis Company Announces Industry's First National Program Dedicated to Training Formerly Incarcerated Prisoners for New Employment Opportunities
PHOENIX, Sept. 26, 2019 /CNW/ --Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. (CSE: HARV, OTCQX: HRVSF) ("Harvest"), a vertically integrated cannabis company with one of the largest and deepest footprints in the U.S., today announced an exclusive partnership with Last Prisoner Project ("LPP"), a new non-profit organization committed to making sure that every cannabis prisoner is released, welcomed home and supported by their community. Harvest is the first large cannabis company to create a proprietary program focused on job creation for formerly incarcerated prisoners that have been affected by the criminalization of cannabis. Harvest and LPP's "Prison to Prosperity" pipeline of talent will focus on facilitating re-entry of individuals impacted by the war on drugs back into society, through workshop training programs, with the goal of providing employment opportunities at Harvest locations nationwide.
According to the US Department of Justice Bureau of Justice Statistics, within three years of release over two-thirds of released prisoners are re-arrested, and within six years of release that number jumps to 79%. The "Prison to Prosperity" program is designed to reverse this statistic and demonstrates Harvest's continued commitment to social justice, diversity and inclusion. It is designed to bring restorative justice to communities most affected, while bringing positive economic impacts to the residents and communities that the company serves.
"Over 40,000 prisoners in the U.S. are currently serving sentences for cannabis charges. While many companies are focused on decriminalization, expungement and clemency, Harvest recognized that re-entry can be incredibly difficult without help," said Harvest Chief Executive Officer Steve White. "We've partnered with the Last Prisoner Project to provide training courses, workshops and funding to help individuals re-enter the job marketplace, with the hope of ultimately placing them in employment opportunities within our Harvest network."
"I launched the Last Prisoner Project out of the conviction that it is wrong to continue to punish people for something society has decided should no longer be illegal, and in the belief that if I asked the legal cannabis industry to contribute the funds needed to gain the release of our prisoners, cannabis companies would see it as an opportunity to do the right thing, to put the values cannabis teaches into action," said Steve DeAngelo, Founder of Last Prisoner Project. "I am pleased and heartened by the response so far from cannabis companies and by many world-renowned musicians, including Stephen and Damian Marley, Willie Nelson, and Eric Rachmany. This overwhelmingly positive response gives me high hopes and strong confidence that the day will come when the last cannabis prisoner on Planet Earth is free to come home to their families. Until then, our mission continues."
Harvest's "Prison to Prosperity" program will offer vocational training opportunities and educational programs specific to the cannabis industry for those who continue to be disadvantaged by a criminal record. The program will begin with a pilot project working in tandem with local reentry organizations in California and will roll out nationally at a later date.
About Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc.
Headquartered in Tempe, Arizona, Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. is a multi-state cannabis operator (MSO) and vertically-integrated cannabis company. Subject to completion of announced acquisitions, Harvest will have one of the largest footprints in the U.S., with rights to more than 210 facilities, of which approximately 130 are retail locations, and more than 1,700 employees across 18 states and territories. Since 2011, the company has been committed to expanding its Harvest House of Cannabis retail and wholesale presence throughout the U.S., acquiring, creating and growing leading brands for patients and consumers nationally and continuing on a path of profitable growth. Harvest's mission is to improve lives through the goodness of cannabis and is focused on its vision to become the most valuable cannabis company in the world. We hope you'll join us on our journey: https://harvestinc.com
Last Prisoner Project (LPP) is an advocacy organization made up of cannabis industry leaders, executives and artists dedicated to making sure that every cannabis prisoner is released, welcomed home and supported by their community. LPP is focusing its efforts on clemency and expungement, re-entry programs and advocacy. As the United States moves away from the criminalization of cannabis, giving rise to a major new industry, there remains the fundamental injustice inflicted upon those who have suffered criminal convictions and the consequences of those convictions. Through intervention, advocacy and awareness campaigns, the forces behind the Last Prisoner Project will work to redress the past and continuing harms of these unjust laws and policies and are dedicated to making sure that every last cannabis prisoner walks free. Visit www.lastprisonerproject.org or text FREEDOM to 24365 to donate and learn more.
Investors are cautioned that forward-looking information is not based on historical facts but instead reflects Harvest management's expectations, estimates or projections concerning future results or events based on the opinions, assumptions and estimates of management considered reasonable at the date the statements are made. Although Harvest believes that the expectations reflected in such forward-looking information are reasonable, such information involves risks and uncertainties, and undue reliance should not be placed on such information, as unknown or unpredictable factors could have material adverse effects on future results, performance or achievements of the combined Company. Among the key factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information are the following: the ability of Harvest to develop Harvest's brand and meet its growth objectives, the ability of Harvest to complete planned acquisitions that are accretive to it's revenue, the ability of Harvest to obtain and/or maintain licenses or other contractual rights to operate in the jurisdictions in which it operates or in which it expects or plans to operate; changes in general economic, business and political conditions, including changes in the financial markets; and in particular in the ability of the Company to raise debt and equity capital in the amounts and at the costs that it expects; adverse changes in the public perception of cannabis; decreases in the prevailing prices for cannabis and cannabis products in the markets that the Company operates in; adverse changes in applicable laws; or adverse changes in the application or enforcement of current laws, including those related to taxation; the inability to locate and acquire suitable companies, properties and assets necessary to execute on the Company's business plans; and increasing costs of compliance with extensive government regulation. This forward-looking information may be affected by risks and uncertainties in the business of Harvest and market conditions.
Media Contacts: Alex Howe, Head of Corporate Communications, Harvest Health & Recreation, Inc. [email protected]