In the heart of Arizona, a tale of injustice, resilience and redemption unfolds. Alicia Deals, a pioneering force in the cannabis industry and the first Black woman to operate a cannabis dispensary under Arizona's social equity program, is preparing for a critical court hearing on May 30. The hearing will decide the fate of her father, Robert Deals, who is currently serving the 12th year of his 18-year sentence for cannabis-related charges in a Yuma prison.

Alicia's story is a compelling example of the paradoxical nature of America's evolving relationship with cannabis. As her father languishes behind bars for selling the same plant, she has been legally sanctioned by the state to do so. Her dispensary, awarded to her by the state's social equity program in April 2022, operates under the popular national brand, Cookies.

"Everything comes full circle. The opportunity to open a dispensary is a once in a lifetime opportunity …

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