Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 


Complete rethink needed of all drug laws

Complete rethink needed of all drug laws

NORML has advised the Ministry of Health a complete rethink is needed of all drug control laws and policies.

In it’s submission to the discussion document on the New National Drug Policy, New Zealand’s longest running cannabis law reform group said the lack of any willingness to look at first principles, and the missed opportunity to place the NDP in a world context, is especially sad given that NZ is now taking a world-leading initiative with “legal highs”.

“At a time when countries around the world are experimenting with alternative approaches to controlling drugs by implementing policies that reject the failed War on Drugs, this new National Drug Policy seems to be saying “let’s have more of the same”,” said NORML president Chris Fowlie, of Auckland.

Mr Fowlie pointed to NORML’s endorsement of the Wellington Declaration, a consensus on a way forward for New Zealand’s national drug policy.

“The consensus is that cannabis use should be a health issue, not a crime. There should be safe, legal access to medicinal cannabis. We believe there should be an adults-only regulated and taxable market for cannabis and other low risk drugs, and New Zealand’s world-leading Psychoactive Substances Act should be widened to include all low risk drugs, including cannabis.”

“New Zealand should investigate and learn from international developments including cannabis law reforms in Colorado, Washington, Uruguay, and the process to review the UN drug control treaties,” added NORML secretary Phil Saxby, of Wellington. “We should be extremely concerned to have the world’s highest cannabis arrest rate, and the world’s highest teenage cannabis use rate – at a cost of over $300 million per year.”

Mr Fowlie pointed to New Zealand’s track record of significant social reforms. “We led the world with needle exhanges, and the Psychoactive Substances Act is perhaps the best drug law in the world.”

In its submission, NORML said it agreed with Associate Minister of Health Peter Dunne’s call for evidence-based approach to regulating drugs: “[T]he Psychoactive Substances Act… could well become the model by which narcotic drugs, currently controlled under the Misuse of Drugs Act, are regulated for the future… After all, most experts now concede the so-called “war” on drugs has failed, and new initiatives are required.”

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On The Pakistan Schoolchildren Killings

The slaughter of the children in Pakistan is incomprehensibly awful. On the side, it has thrown a spotlight onto something that’s become a pop cultural meme. Fans of the Homeland TV series will be well aware of the collusion between sections of the Pakistan military/security establishment on one hand and sections of the Taliban of the other…

Reportedly, it was the breakdown of the relationship between the Pakistan Taliban and the Pakistan military – which for the first time, began bombing Taliban enclaves in the Tribal Federated Areas earlier this year – that led to this revenge attack on the school, which is attended by the children of the military. More>>

 

Parliament Adjourns:

Police: Phillip Smith Investigation Passport Charge

A 25 year-old man will appear in the Whanganui District Court today charged with the Passports Act offence of False Representations. The charges were laid on December 9 by the Auckland-based Phillip Smith investigation... More>>

Intelligence: Inspector-General Accepts Apology For Leak Of Report

The Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security, Cheryl Gwyn, has accepted an unreserved apology from Hon Phil Goff MP for disclosing some of the contents of her recent Report into the Release of Information by the NZSIS in July and August 2011 to media prior to its publication. The Inspector-General will not take the matter any further. More>>

ALSO:

Drink: Alcohol Advertising Report Released

The report of the Ministerial Forum on Alcohol Advertising and Sponsorship has been released today, with Ministers noting that further work will be required on the feasibility and impact of the proposals. More>>

ALSO:

Other Report:

Leaked Cabinet Papers: Treasury Calls For Health Cuts

Leaked Cabinet papers that show that Government has been advised to cut the health budget by around $200 million is ringing alarm bells throughout the nursing and midwifery community. More>>

ALSO:

Maori Party: Tribunal Report Confirms Iwi Ownership Of Lake Waikaremoana

“We are pleased for the claimants that eight years after the hearing began on Lake Waikaremoana they have some closure,” says Māori Party Co-leader Te Ururoa Flavell. “Most importantly, the report confirms freshwater is a taonga and identifies the ownership rights of Tūhoe, Ngāti Ruapani, Ngāti Kahungunu, and Ngāi Tamaterangi to the lake bed.” More>>

ALSO:

Climate Performance Report - Not Achieved: NZ Government Part Of Global Climate Problem

The New Zealand Government’s position on climate change is part of the global problem that we need to overcome if we are to avoid catastrophic climate change, the Green Party said. More>>

ALSO:

NSW Police Statement: Three Dead Following Martin Place Siege

About 2.10am (Tuesday 16 December), a confrontation occurred between police and a man who had taken a number of people hostage inside a café on Martin Place. Shots were fired during the confrontation. As a result, the 50-year-old man was pronounced dead after being taken to hospital. Another man, aged 34, and a woman, aged 38, were pronounced dead after being taken to hospital. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On The Sydney Siege (And DHB Budget Cuts)
Whenever the authorities bring a siege situation to an end, there will be criticism if – as has happened in Sydney – any hostages are seriously hurt, or killed... In the Sydney Morning Herald this morning, columnist Peter Hartcher raises a different point – that the initial public response had been noticeably different to the agitated reactions of politicians and the media. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Income Inequality, And Yo Ho Ho Christmas Songs

As 2014 grinds to a close, we probably didn’t need one more reminder of this government’s ability to stare reality in the face and declare black to be a very fine shade of white... Yet on Wednesday, there was Finance Minister Bill English trying to tell RNZ that the OECD was (a) wrong (b) using old data and (c) somehow anti-growth and in any case (d) New Zealand allegedly already had a strongly re-distributive tax system... More>>

Werewolf: Public Health - The Silent Crisis

Gordon Campbell: New Zealand’s public health system has been in crisis for so long that its failings – and deteriorating performance vis a vis other developed countries – now tend to be treated as its normal mode of being. More>>

ALSO:

Parliament Today: House Adjourns For Summer

Parliament has risen for the summer break with the Adjournment Motion agreed just after 5pm on Wednesday. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news