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Eastern Shoshone To Have Discussion About Legalizing Marijuana

Bobbi Shongutsie


The decline in popularity of fossil fuels has gotten some Wyomingites interested in alternative economic markets.

A special Eastern Shoshone general council meeting will be held May 13 to discuss the decriminalization and legalization of marijuana on the Wind River Indian Reservation at Rocky Mountain hall in Fort Washakie. The meeting is open to the public and will have attorneys and tribal cannabis business owners from out of state in attendance to answer questions.

Bobbi Shongutsie is Eastern Shoshone and a part of the research group SoGo-Beah-Nahtsu. The group's name means mother earth medicine in the Shoshone language. Shongutsie said bringing cannabis to the reservation would be profitable for the local economy.

"Our sovereign rights as Eastern Shoshone people to utilize our resources around here. To cultivate medicine for our people and bring economic development for our communities," Shongutsie said.

Shongutsie is also a part of the Wind River Start Up challenge. She said she wants to open the first dispensary on the Wind River Indian Reservation.

Shongutsie said exercising the Eastern Shoshone's treaty rights are an important element in the discussion.

"Our law here is the Shoshone and Arapaho law and order code. So what we have on the agenda is to legalize cannabis," she said.

Shongutsie said the Eastern Shoshone people will vote on this on May 15.

Have a question about this story? Contact the reporter, Taylor Stagner, at tstagne1@uwyo.edu.

Taylar Dawn Stagner is a central Wyoming rural and tribal reporter for Wyoming Public Radio. She has degrees in American Studies, a discipline that interrogates the history and culture of America. She was a Native American Journalist Association Fellow in 2019, and won an Edward R. Murrow Award for her Modern West podcast episode about drag queens in rural spaces in 2021. Stagner is Arapaho and Shoshone.
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