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Feening Teens Need Support to Beat Addiction

28 April 2014

Feening Teens Need Support to Beat Addiction

Māori Party candidate for Te Tai Hauāuru, Chris McKenzie welcomes the law change that will see synthetic drugs become illegal and says this will be a welcome respite to families who have been coping with the effects of living with addicted family members.

Mckenzie also warns that support must also be put in place for whānau throughout the country who may be coping with whanau members who are withdrawing from drug addiction, or who may be looking for a substitute 'fix' in the absence of legal highs.

"Rather than focusing solely on black market sales or enforcement, the Government should also adequately resource support services to help those that are addicted through withdrawal. Addiction affects the whole whānau not just the individual and the impacts are far reaching and detrimental to communities," says Mr McKenzie.

"Communities need to take credit for forcing the hand of the government on this matter. I am particularly proud of the work of Julie King from my hometown of Tokoroa who has been a strong advocate for the law change and who organised a national day of action recently. We are all negatively affected by the impacts of this drug and we all need to be part of the positive solution," says Mr McKenzie.

"I am proud of the stand the Maori Party has in speaking out so strongly against what we describe as social hazards -any mind-altering substances, legal and illegal, which limit our capacity to be the best that we can be. Our party has made the case however, that it's not just about removing the harmful products from our communities - it's all about whanau and helping to restore themselves to the ultimate expression of their health and wellbeing.

"Organisations such as the New Zealand Drug Foundation will need priority support in order to deal with an expected influx of families seeking help. In reality we have allowed this serious and harmful addiction to embed itself in our young and vulnerable and we need to focus on providing support for those 'feening' over the next few weeks to get that support," says Mr McKenzie.

"I want to see an intensive campaign to support whanau and individuals affected by drug use to access the right information and support. I want to see urgent assistance put towards organisations who deal with drug addiction and rehabilitation to align with the passage of the Bill proposed by this Government."

Important Contact Numbers
If it is not an emergency but you or someone with you has used a product and does not feel well call the National Poisons Centre 0800 764 766 or go to your closest Accident and Emergency room.

If you wish to report a product or retailer for breaching the law then contact the Psychoactive Substances Hotline 0800 789 652.

If you are worried about having a hard time with these products call theAlcohol and Drug Helpline on 0800 787 797. For general enquiries about the law call the Ministry of Health 0800 855 066.

ENDS

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