Our partners in the Yes We Cannabis – RI coalition believe Rhode Island must address the harmful legacy of cannabis prohibition and its racially-biased enforcement. Specifically, we urge state lawmakers to pass legislation that: Automatically expunges past cannabis convictions; Encourages people from disproportionately impacted communities to own and work in cannabis businesses; Invests cannabis tax revenue into social programs that support communities disproportionately harmed by cannabis prohibition; Ensures that people directly impacted by the criminal legal system are represented and centered in the creation of cannabis industry rules and regulations; Decriminalizes cannabis by removing “marijuana” and “marihuana” from the Rhode Island Controlled Substances Act; and Prevents unfair discrimination (in housing, employment, family rights, and other areas) against people who use cannabis or who have been arrested for/convicted of a cannabis offense.

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Participating: Jennifer Rourke (She/Her/Hers) is Co-Founder and Co-Chair of the Rhode Island Political Cooperative, as well as a recent Candidate for State Senate District 29. An activist and leader who calls Warwick home, a mother to four children, Jennifer has been fighting for many years to give a voice to the most marginalized communities. Growing up in low-income housing and to teenage parents, she was taught to always fight for those that are often ignored.

Meko Lincoln is a lifelong resident of Rhode Island. A member of (FIU) Formerly Incarcerated Union & part of the Yes We cannabis RI Coalition. Having been directly impacted by the “War On Drugs”, he spent a considerable amount of his life incarcerated. Learning life lessons through the unfortunate process of recidivism, Meko has embarked upon a life dedicated to change. Currently he works as a Certified Peer Recovery Specialist and Reentry Case Manager assisting individuals with navigating the challenges of returning to the community. To help individuals overcome these barriers and challenges has become an integral part of his life.

Maggie Kain is a member of Yes We Cannabis Coalition and a member of The RI Political Coop. A State Senate District 37 (Block Island and South Kingstown) Candidate, her focus is on advocating for Legalization, centering on social equity and criminal justice. Originally Broadcast On March 17, 2021

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