** Due to the volume of applications received thus far, CERF acceptance and processing of new applications will be paused after February 24, 2022 until further notification. Please check back for additional updates.

The Cannabis Workers Coalition in partnership with the City of Portland’s Cannabis Program and NuLeaf Project is proud to announce the Cannabis Emergency Relief Fund (CERF) to support cannabis employees who were directly impacted by COVID-19, increased vandalism, and crime, and the 2020 wildfires. The Cannabis Emergency Relief Fund will provide one-time grants of up to $5,000 to cannabis industry workers economically impacted from COVID-19, vandalism, robberies, wildfire, and the residual effects of illness, trauma, and grief suffered from such impacts.

Please note: The actual award amount is determined through a scoring process and may not equal the original amount requested.

Eligibility Criteria for Individuals

  • Must be currently working on behalf of an OLCC and City of Portland licensed producer,
  • processor, wholesaler, or retailer AND
  • Have an approved and active OLCC Marijuana Worker Permit, AND
  • Be part of a historically disadvantaged population defined as a minority, women, veteran or low-income individual.


  • Must have previously worked on behalf of an OLCC and City of Portland licensed producer, processor, wholesaler, or retailer and were laid off and/or terminated after March 1st, 2020, AND
  • Have proof of a current OLCC Marijuana Worker Permit OR a Worker’s Permit that expired after March 2020 AND
  • Be part of a historically disadvantaged population defined as a minority, women, veteran or low-income individual.

Low-income individual is defined for purposes of grant eligibility as having an an annual income does not exceed 70% of median income for City of Portland metro area. Median income information can be found HERE.

Required Documents

** Note: If you do not submit your application with these documents, it will be considered an incomplete application and will be denied. The more documentation you can provide, the easier it is for us to award you.

  • Proof of current employment status (Examples: W2’s, offer letter, etc.)
  • Attestation of termination after March 1st, 2020
  • Proof of OLCC Marijuana Workers Permit
  • Documentation showing expenses incurred/loss due to employment interruption caused by Covid-19, vandalism, robbery, wildfire etc.
  • Proof that the business that employed you is licensed by both the OLCC and the City of Portland. Or, if the business no longer is licensed, that they were at the time of your employment/termination. If you are unable to provide this, provide us the employer name and address and independent verification will apply.

Optional Documents

  • Verification of expenses described above (Examples: receipts, past due bills, counseling invoices)

  • Certified payroll documentation such as a W2

  • Tax returns
  • Verification of expenses not covered by insurance

  • Bank or credit card statements

  • Invoices, purchase orders, receipts

  • Any other documentation you feel the organization may find helpful in making a funding decision

Eligible Reimburseable Expenses

  •  Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) associated with COVID-19 
  • Telephone & Internet expenses (If worker was required to fund on their own)
  • Car Insurance (If worker was required to fund on their own)
  • Expenses to cover trauma or grief counseling associated with robberies or wildfire 
  • Mortgage or rent payments that applicant is behind as a result of being laid off
  • OLCC Marijuana Worker Permit costs 
  •  Covid health related expenses included but not limited to testing costs, health care costs and lost wages from sickness or quarantine 

Reimburseable Expenses Not Eligible

  •  Damages covered by insurance 
  •  Costs that have been, or are expected to be reimbursed by any other local, state, or federal government or private program 
  •  Severance pay and benefits 
  •  Legal expenses or settlements, fines, or penalties 
  •  Other expenses may be deemed ineligible in accordance with program rules 

Common Questions

I'm Having Trouble Filling Out the Form

You can fill out and sign with Google Drive or with the Adobe Fill & Sign App

If those options don’t work, you can also choose to submit our Google Form which has been adapted from the paper form. We still urge applications to review the paper form for requirements and eligibility.

I Missed the CERF Info Webinar

If you missed the Q+A webinar with Green Light Law, you can watch the video here and hear more from one of our co-founders Savina Monet here.

What if I'm a Freelancer / Independent Contractor / 1099?

As long as you currently have an OLCC Worker’s Permit or have had an OLCC Worker’s Permit after March 2020, AND you work for a City of Portland licensed cannabis business, you may be eligible for the grant.

Is Time Off Because of Covid Vaccination Reactions an Eligible Expense?

Yes. This would be included in the Covid health related expenses.

The CERF grant has been made possible in part by a grant from the City of Portland, Office of Community & Civic Life.

Any views, findings, conclusions, or recommendations expressed in this website do not necessarily represent those of the City of Portland.