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Stoned In Charge Of A Country?

PRESS RELEASE

17 February 2000

Gael Donoghue
Health Spokesperson


Stoned In Charge Of A Country?

“Neither drunk, NOR stoned in charge of a country, thank you Nandor,” is the response from Christian Heritage Party’s Health Spokesperson Gael Donoghue, to his statement in the House yesterday. The Green MP charged some members of double standards when they over-indulged in alcohol on the premises, and yet they would not debate his pet hobby-horse of decriminalising cannabis.

In noting that the Prime Minister intimated the cannabis issue was in the hands of her Health Minister, Annette King, and Justice Minister, Phil Goff, Mrs Donoghue stated, “The Christian Heritage Party has consistently opposed decriminalisation of cannabis with supporting evidence from scientific, medical and safety backgrounds. These Ministers ought to weigh the evidence fully, including the facts that the so-called ‘soft’ drug cannabis, along with alcohol, is the gateway to greater degradation and the miserable drug culture that is a blight on the youth of our country.” She went on, “Since the lowering of the drinking age we have witnessed far more drunk teenagers. There is nothing to suggest that the same would not happen with cannabis. Cannabis is no ‘soft’ drug, particularly for young people whose bodies have yet to reach full maturity. There are documented mental and psychological detrimental effects. Why add to the toll of drug abuse in this country?”

“The Ministry of Health published figures of 26,000 known opioid drug users in New Zealand in 1996, now estimated at 40,000. It is to be hoped that Nandor Tanczos and other likeminded MPs do some homework and study the cold hard facts in relation to cannabis. The consequences of drug addiction and increased usage will lead to yet more crime, not to mention the safety issues in regard to road users – do we want more ‘stoned’ drivers on the roads as well as drunk ones?” Mrs Donoghue asked.

“The Christian Heritage Party believes that more support for families and increased education in the perils of drug and substance abuse would be of benefit to society instead of legalising or decriminalising a mind-altering drug such as cannabis,” Mrs Donoghue concluded.


Contact: Mrs Gael Donoghue on (06) 347 6000 or (025) 514 980
Party Leader Graham Capill (021) 661 766

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