Marijuana-sponsored job fair aids CORI reform – 'These people have something to prove'
HOLYOKE — Recruiters from the Massachusetts State Police staffed a table Tuesday at a job fair sponsored by a company that grows marijuana.
Not only that, but the a job fair also let hopefuls look up their criminal records, and talk with a volunteering lawyer about getting files sealed.
“I’ve been in this business for 30 years. I never thought I’d see something like this” said Richard Devine, director of the after incarceration program at the Hampden County Sheriff’s Office. “It’s wonderful.”
Medical marijuana provider GTI Massachusetts NP Corp. sponsored a job fair Tuesday at Gateway City Arts in Holyoke with the help of CareerPoint, an employment center in Holyoke. It was at first focused on challenges faced by job applicants with criminal records. But after more than 50 potential employers wanted to come and hire, CareerPoint opened up the job fair to everyone looking for work.
The event drew hundreds of job seekers, not all of them with needing help with a CORI or with criminal histories that impede their employment.
Potential employers included MGM Springfield, HP Hood with its ice cream factory in Agawam, Universal Forest Products- UFP Belchertown and others.
“It’s hard to imagine anything going better than this,” said GTI CEO Peter Kadens. “I think for a long time Holyoke has been a fractured community. That might be because of the demographics. it might be because of the loss of industry. But this event today just shows that all you need is one employer who is willing to reach out and bring people together.”
Medical marijuana provider GTI Massachusetts NP Corp. is hiring 30 to 40 employees right now and will ramp up to 100-or-so workers in 18 to 24 months. Another 15 to 20 employees will work at a planned dispensary.
GTI had its job fair in