At Students for Sensible Drug Policy, I get to hear amazing stories every day about the ways that student leaders are driving change in their communities. SSDP is so much more than just a club. The students who get involved in our mission are eager to create lasting change that impacts real people and get firsthand leadership experience while they’re at it. Read on to learn about one of them, and consider making a gift in support of their work — if you do so today, it will be doubled!
Joseph Gilmore founded the SSDP chapter at UMass Boston in 2016 and put in countless hours of volunteer work with the Yes on 4 campaign to legalize cannabis in Massachusetts. Joe quickly stood out as a natural leader, and won the Outstanding Student Activist award at SSDP2017 in Portland this year.
As activists know, the work doesn’t end once a victory is achieved. In the year since Massachusetts voters approved legal cannabis, Joe has been a local leader in all things cannabis from speaking at the Boston Freedom Rally to joining the board of the Massachusetts Recreational Consumer Council.
Joe is a regular at Cannabis Control Commission hearings, where he added his voice to the fight to protect diversity provisions that will allow people with past cannabis convictions to participate in the new industry. Joe and students from other SSDP chapters in Boston have also urged the Commission to consider policy changes that matter to students, such as recognizing patient rights on campus and equalizing penalties for underage cannabis use to be the same as those for underage alcohol use. Back on campus, UMass Boston and MRCC co-hosted a Know Your Laws event to educate the community about their rights and safe consumption.
Massachusetts is taking major steps toward replacing prohibition with sensible policies that prioritize righting the wrongs of the War on Drugs. We’re proud of Joe and the thousands of SSDPers who work so hard toward their shared vision for a more sensible future.
Help us build the future we want to see by making a tax-deductible gift to SSDP today. What’s more, your gift will be matched dollar for dollar.
We’re well on our way to unlocking an extra $50,000 to support our work. I know we can reach it with your help! Can our student members count on a gift from you today?