Roll Up For Equity Film Screening

Last week “Roll Up for Equity”, the cannabis social equity documentary directed by JM Balbuena, earned 2 Awards By Merit in the Accolade Competition. Balbuena’s film snagged both the Women Filmmaker and Liberation/Social Justice/Protest awards of merit.

The 31 minute documentary that exposes San Diego’s struggle to implement social equity within its regulated cannabis industry, debuted on April 20 at a screening sponsored by San Diego Americans for Safe Access.

San Diego Cannabis Activist Wins Merit Prizes for Social Equity Documentary
Megain McCall, Terrie Best and JM Balbuena attend the premiere of Roll Up for Equity. Photo by Cuqui Huerta

Balbuena said of her project ” I embarked on a journey to uncover and narrate the multifaceted story of cannabis in my hometown—a tale that spans the scope from historical milestones to present-day challenges and opportunities. This documentary is not just a film; it’s a mission-driven exploration into the heart of equity, access, and opportunity within the burgeoning cannabis industry in one of America’s most iconic cities.”

“Roll Up for Equity” featured several San Diego cannabis activists describing the plight of minority cannabis entrepreneurs attempting to enter the burgeoning recreational and medicinal market after years of roadblocks, most notably the over incarceration of people of color during the War on Drugs campaigns of the 80’s and 90’s.

Balbuena’s motivation for this project stems from “a deep-seated belief in the power of storytelling to ignite change, foster understanding, and bridge divides. As a filmmaker, I’ve witnessed firsthand the transformative impact of cinema, and I’m compelled to leverage this medium to spotlight the critical issue of social equity in the cannabis sector—a realm where disparities and barriers persistently shadow the promise of progress and inclusivity.”

See also: City of Vista Unveils Cannabis Social Equity Assessment, Questions Remain

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