Article by Lauren Young; MetroWest Daily News

CommCan, which operates a medical and recreational marijuana dispensary in Millis and a medical marijuana dispensary in Southborough, handed a $1,500 check on Tuesday to the Worcester-based Dismas House, which operates a 35-acre farm and three residential facilities for people recently released from prison.

Dismas House employs nearly three dozen former prisoners who grow 25 various vegetables and sell fresh eggs at local markets, according to the organization’s director, David McMahon.

“This would have a big impact for us, and will help us pay for transitional items needed by people when they are first released from prison,” he said.

The donation was given to the Dismas House after a local homeless shelter previously rejected CommCan’s donation. CEO Ellen Rosenfeld, who runs the marijuana company with her brothers Marc and Jon, told the Daily News that CommCan’s association to marijuana was cited as a conflict of interest with the shelter.

Because marijuana is still federally illegal, it poses problems for some nonprofits who want to maintain federal funding or serve children. But some others have personal issues about accepting CommCan’s money, said Rosenfeld.

“Like many cannabis operations, there remains an unfortunate stigma around this very professional and very high-tech industry, even though we create jobs, contribute to the tax rolls and make charitable contributions,” said Rosenfeld. “We’re thrilled to be able to help Dismas House, and see this as a step in addressing the inequitable way the law was formerly applied to many people who were put behind bars for minor marijuana offenses.”