An organization representing Native American tribes with members in Washington, Idaho, Oregon, Montana, Nevada, Northern California and Alaska has gone on the record as opposing recreational legalization.

Specifically the Affiliated Tribes of Northwest Indians (ATNI) has recently passed an official resolution opposing legalization in Oregon and Alaska, which are on the shortlist of states expected to follow Colorado and Washington’s lead in legalizing it.

The big question, of course, is why?

According to a statement sent to us from the group Smart Approaches to Marijuana, the tribes are deeply concerned about “drugs” and their affect on children.

Says Terri Parr W, Executive Director of ATNI:

ATNI Member Tribes strive for drug free communities in order to provide safe and healthy environments for their tribal members including the most vulnerable, the children. In working toward this objective, they stand strongly in opposition to the legalization of drugs alongside their allies including SAM.

Simon Lee Sampson, of Yakama Nation and the Community Safety Network of Toppenish said:

We cannot deny that marijuana legalization will have a devastating impact on our communities – and we want none of it.

More for us.

About The Author


Raul Duke has been working as a journalist in Southern California for two decades. The medical marijuana juggernaut is one of his many beats. He's a longtime Westside resident who needs to renew his doctor's recommendation soon. If you have news tips, reach out:

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