Social Equity Expungement Clinic

The vertically integrated Multi-State Operator (MSO) Ayr has partnered with the social equity license applicant The Library of New Jersey for an expungement clinic on Sunday in Rahway.

Last year Ayr bought Garden State Dispensary (GSD) chain and operates their locations in Woodbridge in Middlesex County, Union Township in Union County, and Eatontown in Monmouth County.

The expungement clinic will take place from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm at 1579 Irving Street in Rahway in Union County. Those looking for help need to bring their arrest record along with the case docket number if known.

“Despite the legalization of cannabis across 35 plus states, two-thirds of the U.S. population, the criminal justice system still grapples with a host of issues related to the War on Drugs, which continues to disproportionately impact Black and Brown Americans,” said Chairman and CEO of Ayr Jonathan Sandelman. “The main objective of our ‘Changing Legacies’ program is to create an ecosystem of support, partnership, and hope for that better future.”

The Rahway expungement clinic is part of their efforts across the states in which they operate. They want the events to serve as models for similar events in the future, expressing their commitment to righting the harms of the past and creating opportunities for the future.

Community-Minded Social Equity Applicants

Partners Charles Penn and Corey Dishman of the Library of New Jersey are seeking a cannabis retail license and a cultivation license in West Orange in Essex County as Social Equity Applicants.

Dishman and Penn have lived throughout Essex County. Dishman currently lives in West Orange. He was looking for expungement sponsors and connected with Ayr. They are merely sponsoring the event and have not bought stock in the company.

“Ayr has the same values and mission as we do,” he noted.

He explained they named their company “The Library of New Jersey” since a library is a peaceful place of knowledge which is the type of place they want to make.

“We wanted to create an upscale environment different from other retail establishments,” Dishman added.

Like a regular library, they plan to have several books, resources, and education available there.

“Those are all things that will be included in our environment,” he said.

They are passionate about uplifting their community by offering educational programs through Stockton University and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) to 20 applicants. The program would focus on general job seeking and readiness skills like writing a resume and interviewing.

“We want to be influential in the community beyond just the sale of cannabis,” Penn said.

He is also eager to make cannabis consumption mainstream.

Being very civically minded, they want to educate and empower their communities. Dishman explained the company is based on its four pillars of education, community, equity, and equality.

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Their previous efforts included sponsoring the feeding of 10 families and donating food for 150 people to a food bank. They have ambitious plans for similar efforts and more expungement clinics.

Dishman has been involved in civic community activism for many years. He previously worked with the noted civil rights organization, the People Organization for Progress (POP), with whom he engaged in civil rights protests and efforts to combat violence in Newark, East Orange, and Irvington.

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