An indigenous tribe in Wyoming is considering legalizing cannabis and hemp in order to boost the economy.
According to the Star Tribune, the Eastern Shoshone Tribe at Wind River Reservation wants to get more involved with cannabis in order to bring in money and use it as an alternative medicine.
Earlier this year, the Eastern Shoshone Tribe’s General Council voted to approve a resolution that would give a group the right to examine legalizing medical cannabis and hemp production. The group supporting this measure, known as So-go-Beah Naht-Su’ in Shoshone, or Mother Earth and Medicine, think that legalizing would help support the community in many positive ways. “Some of the benefits we thought of together were to create more jobs and to heal our people,” said group member Bobbi Shongutsie. “We’re trying to transition hemp and medical cannabis into Wyoming so our tribe can get financially stable.”
Currently, because of the legal status of hemp, the tribe shouldn’t have much trouble if they decide to cultivate and sell the product. Cannabis, however, may be trickier, despite the fact that they would be legalizing for only medical purposes, as Wyoming does not yet have medical cannabis. Still, those in support of the measure are standing by it firmly. “We want to give them something to look forward to,” said group member Alexis Eagle. “Every chance we get, we’re talking about it.”
“We obviously have a vision on getting hemp and medical cannabis here, and our very first step is taking it to our governing body,” added Shongutsie. “We are the last of the first seventh generation, inspiring and motivating the next seventh generation.”
Wyoming has long been known as one of the states with the strictest laws on cannabis. However, studies show that support of cannabis within Wyoming is at a record high. If the Wind River Reservation manages to legalize medical cannabis and hemp, it could be a game-changer for the state.