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


National drags feet on drug laws to protect young Kiwis

Iain Lees-Galloway
Associate Health Spokesperson

9 April 2013

National drags feet on drug laws to protect young Kiwis

National has failed to make protecting young New Zealanders from dangerous drugs a priority, Labour’s Associate Health spokesperson Iain Lees-Galloway says.

“The Psychoactive Substances Bill will finally have its first reading today following years of indecision by the government on how it wants to tackle ‘legal highs’.

“Unfortunately that dithering also means we are looking at a greatly reduced time for public submissions to ensure legislation goes through before temporary bans legislated for nearly two years ago lapse.

“Labour will support the reduced hearing, but only because we know how long parents have had to wait for the Government to get its act together. There are still unanswered questions about why it has taken so long to progress this legislation.

“The Law Commission Report Controlling and Regulating Drugs – A Review of the Misuse of Drugs Act 1975, initiated by the Labour Government, was released on May 3rd 2011. That report contained the recommendation that the Psychoactive Substances Bill seeks to implement.

“So why has it taken nearly two years for the Government to act? Why, when the bill was ready in February, did the Government not send it to select committee straight away so the submissions could be heard?

“The only answer must be that protecting our kids just isn’t a priority for this National-led Government.

“This isn’t a minor bill. For the first time, the New Zealand Parliament is expected to pass legislation that will establish a pathway for some drugs to be made legal. That is a significant change to our drug laws and not one to be taken lightly. The select committee should not be expected to simply rubber-stamp the Government’s proposals.

“We are proud of our robust democracy in New Zealand. But once again John Key’s Government is riding roughshod over New Zealanders’ rights to participate in our law making. National needs to tidy up its act and start working in the interests of New Zealanders.”


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Relevant Consents Gained: Government Unveils RMA Reform Package

The government has formally hauled down the flag on its attempts to alter the balance of environmental and economic priorities in the Resource Management Act, unveiling a 180-page Resource Legislation Amendment Bill containing reforms that have been largely endorsed by most political parties. More>>


Closing Schools And Such: Interim Redcliffs Decision Announced

“While the school’s board has argued that circumstances that could give rise to potential disruption are extremely unlikely, advice from technical experts has shown these concerns cannot be ruled out." More>>


Jane Kelsey: High Court Can’t Make Groser Provide TPPA Information Faster

‘This week we went back to court to challenge Trade Minister Groser’s stalling tactics over the release of information on the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement negotiations, following a High Court order that he reconsider the Official Information Act request I made last January’, said University of Auckland law professor Jane Kelsey, first applicant in the case. More>>

Werewolf 58: No Climate For Change

The last time the global community tried to take collective action on climate change the world’s leaders finally came to agree that every not-too-onerous effort should be made to hold global warming to 2°C above the pre-industrial average. At Paris, all 150 participant countries nations will have put forward their pledges... On the information available, New Zealand's is the second weakest contribution of any nation in the developed world. More>>


Lambton Quay Shutdown: Object Was Made To Look Like Bomb

Police cordoned off part of Lambton Quay Wednesday afternoon, saying that a suspicious package had been found. Buildings were evacuated and buses were detoured. The army’s explosive ordnance disposal unit was brought to the Quay. More>>


Public Sector Still Shrinking: Record Low Number Of 'Backroom Bureaucrats'

Ongoing restraint in the public sector and a focus on better frontline services has seen a further reduction in the number of core Government employees, State Services Minister Paula Bennett says. More>>


Disobeying The Law: Police Censorship Of Crime Research “An Outrage”

The Green Party is calling on Police Minister Michael Woodhouse to ensure Police scrap controversial contracts that place onerous restrictions on academic researchers’ access to Police data, the Green Party says. More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news