Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Weak drug law changes ignore expert advice

Weak drug law changes ignore expert advice

Weak changes to the Misuse of Drugs Act will be easy to get around because the government is too compromised to make the necessary changes, Progressive Wigram MP Jim Anderton says.

Jim Anderton was the former minister in charge of drug policy who sent the issue to the Law Commission because the Misuse of Drugs Act is not coherent and effective in responding to the misuse of psychoactive drugs. (See preface to the Commission report; link below).

As the Commission says, problems include "the adequacy of the legislative framework to deal with new psychoactive substances."

Jim Anderton says Peter Dunne and the National Party had more than three months to get a law change ready after the Law Commission reported back this year.

"The Law Commission advised the Government to reverse the onus of proof so that sellers would have to prove their drugs are safe.

"Because the government hasn't reversed the onus of proof, the new law will be skirted by manufacturers. They will simply withdraw their drugs, slightly change the chemical composition, and put their products back on the market.

"The Government has failed to do what the Law Commission advised them to do. It has had plenty of time."

Jim Anderton is sceptical of the Government's sincerity on this issue.

"Peter Dunne has a bad record of demonizing any attempt to control socially harmful substances He called laws to prevent the sale of tobacco to underage children as ‘fascist’, smoke free bar legislation 'extremism' and said spending money on tobacco control was ‘a scandalous waste of money in pursuit of some health zealots’ beady eyed political correctness.’

"Now the Government is doing less than the bare minimum after stalling for time on psychoactive substances.

"Foot-dragging is not a surprise when the Government sees social harm as an issue of extremist zealotry," Jim Anderton said.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On The Panic In The Pacific Over China

For years, it has been no secret that China wants closer security and trade ties with the small nations of the Pacific region. All part of Beijing’s self-image as a global superpower. To that end this week, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi embarked on an unprecedented 10-day tour of the Pacific, aimed at convincing his Pacific hosts to join a cross-Pacific agreement that would let Beijing provide them with high-level police training and security, shared data co-operation and other joint services ranging from agriculture to tourism...


Covid-19: Second Vaccine Booster For The Most Vulnerable
People who are at high-risk of getting very sick from a COVID-19 infection will soon be eligible to receive a second booster, COVID-19 Response Minister Chris Hipkins said today... More>>

Crime: Govt Helps Protect Shops From Ram Raids

The Government is providing further support to help Police protect small businesses affected by a spike in ram raids, Minister of Police Poto Williams says... More>>

Government: Investment Boosts Coastal Shipping In Aotearoa
New Zealand is a step closer to a more resilient, competitive, and sustainable coastal shipping sector following the selection of preferred suppliers for new and enhanced coastal shipping services, Transport Minister Michael Wood has announced today... More>>

PM Speech: Harvard University Commencement Speech - Democracy, Disinformation And Kindness

In Te Reo Māori, the language of the indigenous people of New Zealand, I paid tribute to all of the esteemed guests who stand here in this great forest of knowledge. It is a privilege to be here, and I thank you for the honour... More>>

Government: Independent Panel Appointed To Review Electoral Law
Justice Minister Kris Faafoi today announced appointments to the independent panel that will lead a review of New Zealand’s electoral law. “This panel, appointed by an independent panel of experts... More>>

Trade: Prime Minister To Visit United States
Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is leading a trade mission to the United States this week as part of the Government’s reconnection strategy to support export growth and the return of tourists post COVID-19... More>>




InfoPages News Channels