Equity, Diversity and Inclusion is a Priority for the State of Colorado
The Marijuana Enforcement Division is committed to fostering an inclusive and equitable cannabis industry in Colorado that acknowledges the effects of decades of criminal enforcement of marijuana laws on communities of color. As part of Colorado’s commitment to equity, diversity, and inclusion, the MED is focusing on outreach and engagement resources to support diversity initiatives in the cannabis industry. The MED's efforts aim to increase diversity in the number of Owner Licenses, which has less diverse representation in comparison to the number of Employee Licensees, so the industry is more reflective of Colorado’s demographics.
A person who meets the eligibility criteria for a Social Equity Licensee can participate in the Division’s “Accelerator Program” or may apply to independently own and operate a Regulated Marijuana Business license.
- Emergency Adopted Rules, Effective August 8, 2023
- New Fee Rules, Effective July 1, 2023 - Social Equity Applicants and Licensees may be eligible for reduced fees.
At this time, Social Equity Fees cannot be paid using the online application submission process. Please use the hard copy applications, which can be submitted to the MED Lakewood office:
- Schedule an In-person appointment, or
- dropped off/mailed to:
1697 Cole Blvd. Suite 200
Lakewood, CO 80401
- Current Rulemaking Activities
- MED is Now Facilitating the Social Equity Program Advisory Work Group; check out the webpage for more information.
How do I apply?
To begin the process, Applicants must FIRST submit a Natural Person Finding of Suitability Application. Fingerprints are required with the submission of the Suitability application which you can get by either:
- Making an in-person appointment; select the "Regulated Business License Social Equity Program Applicant" option within the "Regulated Business Licensing" section of the scheduling program.
- Or, prior to submitting your application, visit a Colorado State-Approved Third-Party Fingerprint Provider to have your fingerprints taken and include the fingerprint receipt with your application packet. Visit the Business Owner webpage for additional information.
The State Licensing Authority will not deny an application for a Social Equity License or a related request for a Finding of Suitability on the sole basis of a marijuana conviction.
Once your Finding of Suitability has been approved, you should decide whether to apply as an Independent Operator or an Accelerator Licensee.