Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Robson's Cloudy Cannabis Vision Strikes Again

31 August, 2004
Robson's cloudy cannabis vision strikes again

Green MP Nandor Tanczos today accused Matt Robson of gross irresponsibility for misrepresenting the views of the Hawke's Bay Clinical Director of Mental Health, Dr Anne Walsh, following a presentation by her on cannabis issues in the Hawke's Bay.

"Mr Robson appears to have deliberately distorted comments by Dr Walsh in order to score cheap points" said Nandor, the Green Party's spokesperson for Cannabis Law Reform.

"In his charge for the moral highground, he has forgotten the importance of simple honesty."

Mr Robson's press release said today that "Dr Walsh said there is a need for further education about the strong link between using cannabis and mental illness but all such education programmes are undermined by the endless calls for decriminalisation by parties that fail our young and our future."

The Hawke's Bay District Health Board has confirmed today that this is an inaccurate reflection of Dr Walsh's comments. Her report indicated that the majority of people who use cannabis do so without problems but that for a small number of users there are very real issues. She made no comment on the pros or cons of law reform.

"Dr Walsh did call for more evidence-based education about cannabis, something that I strongly support."

Nandor also accused Matt Robson and other prohibitionist MPs of shoddy thinking on the issue.

"It is spurious to say that cannabis causes mental illness because many people with a mental illness use cannabis. There is good evidence that some people who are mentally unwell seek it out."

Nandor cited growing evidence that people with mental health problems do self-medicate with cannabis, for example the paper by Castle presented to the National Cannabis and Mental Illness Conference in Melbourne Australia last week.

"It's not a good idea, but it does happen. Politicians who say cannabis causes mental illness are not supported by the evidence. Science has yet to show that a causal link exists."

Nandor also said that the illegality of cannabis makes the kind of drug education called for by Dr Walsh more difficult.

"It has been a consistent finding of select committee inquiries and government studies around the world that cannabis prohibition hinders effective drug education. That is one of the strongest arguments for change to the law," he said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Ruataniwha: DOC, Hawke's Bay Council Developer Take Supreme Court Appeal

The Department of Conservation and Hawke's Bay Regional Investment Company (HBRIC) are appealing to the Supreme Court over a conservation land swap which the Court of Appeal halted. More>>


With NZ's Marama Davidson: Women’s Flotilla Leaves Sicily – Heading For Gaza

Women representing 13 countries spanning five continents began their journey yesterday on Zaytouna-Oliva to the shores of Gaza, which has been under blockade since 2007. On board are a Nobel Peace Laureate, three parliamentarians, a decorated US diplomat, journalists, an Olympic athlete, and a physician. A list of the women with their background can be found here. More>>

Gordon Campbell: On The Key Style Of Crisis Management

At Monday’s post Cabinet press conference Key was in his finest wide- eyed “Problem? What problem?” mode. No, there wasn’t really a problem that top MPI officials had been at odds with each other over the meaning of the fisheries policy and how that policy should be pursued... More>>


Mt Roskill: Greens Will Not Stand In Likely Post-Goff By-Election

“The Green Party’s priority is changing the Government in 2017, and as part of that we’ve decided that we won’t stand a candidate in the probable Mt Roskill by-election... This decision shows the Memorandum of Understanding between Labour and the Green Party is working." More>>


Wellington: Predator Free Capital Plan

Wellington City Council (WCC), the Greater Wellington Regional Council (GWRC) and NEXT Foundation, today announced a joint collaboration to make Wellington the first Predator Free capital city in the world. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Judith Collins’ Efforts At Self Correction

Thousands of prisoners currently in prison may be entitled to an earlier release than expected – and compensation – because Corrections has incorrectly calculated their term of imprisonment. Unless of course, the government buries its mistakes by changing the law and retro-actively getting itself off the hook… More>>


More Justice & Corrections

Sector Opposes Bill: Local Government Bill Timeframe Extended

The Minister of Local Government Peseta Sam Lotu-Iiga has asked the Select Committee to extend the report back date for the Local Government Act 2002 Amendment Bill (No 2). More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news