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UnitedFuture needed to continue driving drug reform forward

UnitedFuture needed to continue driving drug reform forward

UnitedFuture Party Leader Damian Light is concerned that the progress made on drug reform is sliding back already.

“UnitedFuture has been moving New Zealand towards a health based approach to drugs. However National’s announcement over the weekend of additional funding for the failed war on drugs shows that the old parties do not understand how to fix this problem.”

“Last week Labour Leader Jacinda Adern was widely praised for her response to a question on medicinal cannabis, but her party is yet to launch a drug reform policy.” Said Mr Light

UnitedFuture has made drug reform one of its top 10 policies for this election, understanding the significant and widespread impact that drugs have on our country.

“Convicting people for small amounts of drugs makes it harder for them to get jobs, housing and even travel. This does nothing but contribute to the problems, while ignoring any potential health issues.” Said Mr Light. “The government spends an estimated $350m each year to address the problems of drug use, yet most of this goes to enforcement while people with addictions are unable to get help from a healthcare system struggling for funding.”

UnitedFuture policy is to;

• The use of healthcare options in the first instance for possession.

• Place health care and treatment at the centre of drug policy.

• Create a regulated market for drugs that are proven low-risk.

• Shut criminals out of the market.

“There are only two parties in parliament talking about real drug reform and only UnitedFuture has a proven track record of moving it forward.” Said Mr Light.

UnitedFuture convinced the government to focus the National Drug Policy (2015) on a health perspective and has progressively opened up access to cannabis based medicines.

“We’ve worked with other parties to achieve this and look forward to continuing this work after the election. However this will only happen if UnitedFuture is present, so it’s critical that people who want drug reform vote for UnitedFuture.”


ENDS


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Election Day Results


2017 General Election - Preliminary Count

National won 46% of the vote with Labour on 35.8%.

NZ First won 7.5%, with the Greens on 5.8%.

ACT held on to Epsom, but failed to get more MPs.

The Maori Party were wiped out of Parliament.

There are still special votes to be counted, but clearly National is in the box seat to form the next Government.

The Greens can not contemplate a deal with National.

So, Winston Peters will have to make a choice and could back National or a combined Labour/Green coalition.

The most likely result is National and NZ First will reach some sort of deal to form the next government.


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