ACLU speaks out against halting compassion centers

Providence, RI – By MEGAN HALL
The Rhode Island ACLU is urging Governor Lincoln Chafee to lift his hold on the state's medical marijuana dispensaries.

In a hand delivered letter, the civil liberties group challenges U.S. Attorney Peter Neronha's contention that state compassion centers violate federal law.

Executive director Steve Brown says he's reviewed the federal government's most recent memo on state medical marijuana and according to his interpretation "the dispensaries that are scheduled to be set up in Rhode Island are in perfect compliance, not only with state law but the federal policy."

The so called Ogden memo, issued in 2009, says in general, the federal government will not pursue people who are clearly following state medical marijuana laws.

Governor Chafee halted the state's compassion center program on Monday, following a letter from the U.S Attorney. He says he hope to gather advice from Governors who have received similar letters about how to respond.

More details
Read the ACLU's letter here
Read the Ogden Memo here

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