Working to Reform Marijuana Laws in Rhode Island


CANCELLED: RI House Judiciary Committee Hearings on MJ Bills 3/26

Rep Slater has delayed the hearing on his bill to address language relating to board members of existing dispensaries having an in to the retail market. Read more here:...

State House Hearing on Marijuana (Article 20) Scheduled for March 20

The Rhode Island House Committee on Finance has scheduled the agenda for the public hearing on Article 20 (Marijuana), the "Adult Use of Marijuana Act," for March 20, 2019 at "the rise of the...

Let’s Have Better Marijuana Legalization for Rhode Island

NORML Rhode Island explores Governor Gina Raimondo’s recently unveiled budget proposal for 2020 that would legalize recreational marijuana in Rhode Island “with reluctance.”


Since its founding in 1970, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws (NORML) has provided a voice in the public policy  debate for those Americans who oppose cannabis prohibition and favor an end to the practice of arresting cannabis users. A nonprofit public-interest advocacy group, NORML represents the interests of the tens of millions of Americans who use marijuana responsibly.

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raimondo’s 2020 proposal: a fact sheet



of u.s. adults think marijuana should be legalized*

*Source: sept. 2018, the pew research center

Registered patients, caregivers and purchasers in Rhode Island**

**Source: 2018 MMP Report to the RI General Assembly

There is Still a Lot to Do!

It’s been more than a decade since Rhode Island legalized Medical Marijuana, and we have gotten only slightly closer to ending cannabis prohibition for good. While we are encouraged that legalization has been proposed in Governor Raimondo’s Fiscal Year 2020 Budget, we are dismayed by the restrictions and regulations put forth, without discussion. NORML RI supports an open and fair process, which includes presenting this as legislation that can be debated and discussed publicly. We do not believe that a recreational proposal should be muddled up with the erosion of existing patient rights. It’s time to let them know we are watching!

RI NORML Newsroom

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NORML Rhode Island Supports:

full legalization

Adults should have the freedom to use marijuana responsibly, just as with other medications. Marijuana should be subject to reasonable taxation and regulation.

local business opportunities

We support fair and accessible licensing opportunities for small businesses and co-ops. Data shows that a greater percentage of small business revenue goes right back into the local economy. Let’s make sure there are still opportunities for local businesses that improve the community and the local economy, and not price out the little guy before we even start.

education & advocacy

Cannabis is most effective when properly chosen and consumed in the way most beneficial to the user. There is more to choosing the proper medicine than THC content. We do not believe in arbitrary restrictions based solely on THC content. The public should have access to quality information about what they are ingesting and why.

growth of the hemp industry

Beyond the wonders of marijuana we all know, there is hemp, marijuana’s non-psychoactive cousin. Hemp is a fast-growing, renewable alternative for everything from food products, textiles, paper, etc. As a non-mind-altering substance, we do not believe hemp should be subject to the same “sin taxes” proposed to marijuana containing THC. (Current proposal: 80% wholesale tax on CBD made from hemp)

quality control

Along with education, consumers should also know what goes into their cannabis, how it is grown, and lab testing results to make sure it is free from pesticides, unwanted additives, and contaminants that are not safe in any other products.

sentence forgiveness & SOCIAL EQUITY PROGRAMS

Along with legalization, it is important to look beyond the revenue to address social issues. Among them, sentence forgiveness for those currently incarcerated for non-violent marijuana offenses, which would relieve our crowded prisons and save taxpayer dollars. In addition, we should follow the lead of Massachusetts’ Cannabis Control Commission, which encourages social equity programs reparative practices in the commercial marijuana industry.

There’s Power in Numbers.
Join NORML Rhode Island Today.


If people let government decide which foods they eat and medicines they take, their bodies will soon be in as sorry a state as are the souls of those who live under tyranny.

- Thomas Jefferson, third President of the United States & hemp farmer

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