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Simon Bridges Drug Confusion

Simon Bridges Drug Confusion
Candor Wellington

Simon Bridges nonsensical comments regarding the scandalous air brushing of the drug driving cabinet report paper show that he is still completely ignorant about the issues involved, and road safety group the Campaign Against Drugs on Roads is outraged.

The review of the drug testing regime was full of logical fallacies and omitted info that enabled it to conclude saliva testing devices were not reliable or fast enough to be effective.

It ruled the saliva screening takes at least five minutes, but Candor Spokeswoman Rachael Ford says the current field test takes 3 x as long.
It noted that it is unlikely to detect half of cannabis users, but that was only because test sticks were binned before getting time to develop.

It noted that results are not reliable enough for criminal prosecution - which is a non issue because all other regimes only use the roadside tests as a preliminary screening one, before conducting further evidential saliva and blood tests, if people maintain innocence.

Mr Bridges seems unaware of all these significant 'details', and oddly myth bound in making telling the Herald that "the real factor is reliability ... we can't have innocent people accused of drug driving if they haven't been."

He clearly didn't read the report which notes that the current regime has seen needles rammed in the arms of 45 innocent people out of only hundreds put through the field test here - at the same time few Australians have received false positives midst thousands tested. Local research has also scrutinised our breath testing and shown saliva tests may well deliver fewer false positives for drugs than does local breath testing for alcohol.

Mr Bridges spouting of the typical drug legaliser propaganda about some mythic risk of mass wrongful arrests graphically demonstrates he does not understand the one big issue - that issue every one is working on is improving the sensitivity of saliva tests to cannabis, because of too many false negatives, not the reverse. This actually made it into the report - never read?

As Iain Lees-Galloway notes National delivered to Cabinet a good for nothing report, showing flagrant disregard for public safety as harm was camouflaged. It omitted the harm measures and deliberately obfuscated the response issues, with claims like that tests do not detect all drugs. Well neither do breathalysers yet we find them useful.

The draft report however gave one astounding figure that media - ever sensitive to the pro drug lobby - ignored. 75% of injured at fault drivers who had not used alcohol tested positive for cannabis. Up from the Waikato Hospital Road Accident Survey 1980 which found only 7% of injured drivers positive.

This is a problem driving the Lions share of our road injury toll because Cabinet Ministers have deliberately let the dumb drivers answer to saturation drink drive Policing flourish. If a saliva test detected cannabis alone and removed most pot impaired drivers it would be worth using just for that.

Mr Bridges needs to stop the aberrant program of denial that has spanned successive Governments since 2000, when foreign Governments mostly began re-legislating in ways to enable Police to use of modern tech as it comes available.

He needs to take his position seriously enough to get himself informed, as the closed door he has shown our organisation in preference for deceptive reports that we warned him about weeks ago is costing lives. We're not rich like Soros or the Pharmaceutical companies but we can offer free and accurate info.

Yes the 75% of injured at fault drivers who had not used alcohol tested positive for cannabis, and yes they may well be National voters - but a potential future dead or imprisoned voter is not one who has been served well. Sometimes unpopular laws must be served.

Fix the law to enable random saliva testing now Mr Bridges, because the tech is there now, and desired breakthrough improvements are imminent. Our breath testing regime has been upgraded repeatedly, and so it shall be with drug tests, but we need to make a start given our massive drug toll.


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