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Turner offers Mallard briefing on drug education

Tuesday, 2 November, 2004

Turner offers Mallard briefing on drug education in schools

United Future's Judy Turner has offered Education Minister Trevor Mallard a briefing on a schools drug education handbook after he said in Parliament today that he didn't know if the phrase 'harm minimisation' had been removed from it.

"I'm sure the Minister would agree that it would be a very fine thing if he did know what approach to drug education was being taken in schools under his watch, and I'm more than happy to bring him up to speed," Mrs Turner said.

Last week, she revealed that the term 'harm minimisation' had been dumped from the final version of the book in a huge blow to the pro-drug propaganda of the Greens, who had originally pushed for the handbook.

The term featured in early drafts of Strengthening Drug Education in School Communities, which Mrs Turner said again today remained too ambivalent on drug use.

"The draft document actually stated that harm minimisation, and not drug avoidance, is the primary goal of drug education. Incredibly, it even sought to avoid promoting abstinence in case it 'stigmatises experimentation with drugs as deviant behaviour'.

"I would have to say that having an Education Minister on top of the issue would be a definite plus for our young people," she said.

ENDS

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