Chris Nani writes. I recently completed the following case study of Los Angeles’ social equity program and Social equity programs are designed to help individuals and communities harmed by the War on Drugs by creating opportunities that otherwise would not be available.

Using ten objective metrics, my colleague and I scored Los Angeles’ social equity program  at 85/140 (60.71%).


Overall, Los Angeles has a below average social equity program, with the potential of improving as the program continues to roll out. Los Angeles’ social equity program inception and framework scored well by providing those impacted by the War on Drugs by providing broad opportunities in the cannabis industry. However, the implementation of the program has not met expectations.

Los Angeles’ program received high marks in some Accessibility Factors. The program’s expansive eligibility criteria permit the majority of individuals harmed by the War on Drugs access to the program. Los Angeles does little to support the expungement process, but the score benefits from California’s automatic expungement review system. The program does a good job reserving licenses for social equity applicants and providing assistance during the application process bolstering their overall score. However, there is anecdotal evidence of applicants being exploited for their equity from shareholders.

Under the Environment Factors, Los Angeles earned less than half the possible points. As the program currently exists, it does not promote the long-term success of applicants and does little to address existing market concerns affecting applicants in the short-term. Educational services offered by the program are minimal. Incubators provide little support and some have allegedly abused their position as Tier 3 applicants. Some government officials and city council members appear to be more interested in promoting their own agendas rather than the future of the social equity program. Los Angeles currently does not have a community reinvestment fund which severely limits the outreach and potential of the social equity program.

Here’s the report in its entirety

Los Angeles Social Equity Report


To Contact Chris please get in touch below

Christopher Nani
President, First Generation Law Student Association
J.D. Candidate Class of 2019
Moritz College of Law The Ohio State University
55 W 12th Ave, Columbus, OH 43210