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


Chief Coroner on synthetic cannabis

Statement from the Chief Coroner, Judge Deborah Marshall

Today I met with the Associate Health Minister Hon Peter Dunne at his request to discuss the recent deaths in the Auckland region potentially connected to the use of synthetic cannabis.

I share Mr Dunne's concern at the suffering synthetic cannabis and other illegal drugs are causing to the wider community. I also share his view of ensuring the public has as much information as possible about dangers of drug use.

I was first alerted by an Auckland-based coroner on the afternoon of Thursday 20 July who, as duty coroner, had noticed a number of deaths in that week, and after inquiring with Coronial Services, found there had been more in the two weeks before.

The following day (Friday 21 July) I was contacted by St John's medical director who raised with me his concern at the number of people they were transporting to hospital.

With a further death being reported overnight, I decided it was imperative that the public were warned as soon as possible, and a public statementfrom myself and the Police was issued later that day. Auckland District Health Board and St John also issued a public statement.

We are working closely with the Ministry of Health, Police, District Health Boards, ESR and pathologists to identify the substances involved and coroners will be providing updates as part of our role to prevent harm to the public.

The police and coronial investigations are at any early stage, and the exact causes of death have yet to be established. All of these cases have been assigned to Coroner Morag McDowell, to ensure all of the available information is before one coroner who can then liaise with other agencies.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On DHB Deficits And Free Trade

Currently the world is looking on aghast at the Trump administration’s plans to slash Obamacare, mainly in order to finance massive tax changes that will deliver most of their gains to the wealthy. Lives will be lost in the trade-off. Millions of Americans stand to lose access to the healthcare they need.

Spot the difference with New Zealand, where DHBs are under intense pressure to reduce deficits within a climate of chronic underfunding. More>>


Greens' Response: Slum-Like Rentals Exposed In Renting Review

“...The grim findings of the review are a wakeup call about the true state of rentals in this country. Too many renters are festering in slum-like conditions under the thumb of landlords who have largely unchecked powers and ignore tenants’ complaints when it suits them.” More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Life And Times Of Peter Dunne

The unkind might talk of sinking ships, others could be more reminded of a loaded revolver left on the desk by his Cabinet colleagues as they closed the door behind them, now that the polls in Ohariu had confirmed he was no longer of much use to National. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Labour’s Campaign Launch

One of the key motifs of Ardern’s speech was her repeated use of the phrase – “Now, what?” Cleverly, that looks like being Labour’s response to National’s ‘steady as it goes’ warning against not putting the economic ‘gains’ at risk. More>>


Lyndon Hood: Social Welfare, Explained

Speaking as someone who has seen better times and nowadays mostly operates by being really annoying and humiliating to deal with, I have some fellow feeling with the current system, so I’ll take this chance to set a few things straight.. More>>


Deregistered: Independent Board Decision On Family First

The Board considers that Family First has a purpose to promote its own particular views about marriage and the traditional family that cannot be determined to be for the public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable... More>>


Transport Policies: Nats' New $10.5bn Roads Of National Significance

National is committing to the next generation of Roads of National Significance, National Party Transport Spokesperson Simon Bridges says. More>>





Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election