Health-based regime for drug abuse and addiction heralds new era of compassion

The Green Party is celebrating significant changes to the Misuse of Drugs Act that will ensure police treat drug addiction like the health issue it is.

"Today we’ve passed the most transformative change in drug law in New Zealand in over 30 years", Green Party spokesperson on drug law reform Chlöe Swarbrick said.

"We’re living up to the rhetoric as a country that implements evidence-based policy, and one that prioritises compassion.

"Informed by the real-world practice of police, working across Government we’ve developed a process to see that those caught in the web of addiction are supported into care and recovery. That means people will no longer be unnecessarily locked up behind bars, we reduce bias and prejudice through data-collection, and we’ll see people supported and helped to recover rather than punished.

"Alongside frontline police, mental health and addiction sector workers, the Greens have advocated loud and clear for over a decade to see drug addiction and abuse treated as the health issue it is. We are proud that this is part of our Confidence and Supply agreement with Labour.

"Mountains of evidence shows that when we take people down the criminal pathway we do nothing to reduce drug use or demand. Instead we increase the harm to those with addiction problems, their communities, and produce greater drug crime.

"This is part of a transformative shift in Aotearoa New Zealand to treat the underlying issues that drive mental health, drug abuse and addiction, away from the draconian, punitive ‘out of sight out of mind’ lock-em-up model.

"Along with the Government response to the Mental Health and Addiction Inquiry, and the Misuse of Drugs Amendment, we’re working on regulations to improve patient access to quality, affordable medicinal cannabis products. We are also holding a referendum on the legal regulation of cannabis to secure community wellbeing and control access.

"Today is a significant day for New Zealand and I thank our Government partners Labour and NZ First for working with us to get this passed into law".

Action

Virtual Events

We have activists across Aotearoa / New Zealand who are working hard to build a brighter future for our kids and grandkids. This page lists upcomin...
Take Action

Action

It's time to pay our essential workers a dignified wage

Our essential workers are the heroes getting us through the COVID-19 crisis, yet for too long they’ve been...
Take Action

Action

Join our call to stop funding fossil fuels!

We need to remove all public money managed by the Government from climate-changing fossil fuel industries.
Take Action

Action

Support our Climate Action Plan for bigger bolder climate action

We agree with all five of the School Strike for Climate's demands. Read more and sign the petition.
Take Action

Action

Show your support to end housing inequality

Our essential workers are the heroes getting us through the COVID-19 crisis, yet for too long they’ve been undervalued and many barely....
Take Action

Latest Health Announcements

Story

Support for Christchurch’s youth with dedicated mental health services at Canterbury University

The Green Party is announcing today that free mental wellbeing services will soon be available at Canterbury University, making services available ...
Read More

Policy

Health Policy

Quality, free healthcare provided by a publicly funded health system is the basis of a good life. Everyone has a right to the healthcare services t...
See More

Story

SPEECH: Green Party Co-leader James Shaw – Ministerial statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.  The scale of what we face right now is unlike anything we have ever seen before. Overcoming it is our common purpose.
Read More

Story

Ground-breaking abortion law passes, giving NZers compassionate healthcare

Ground-breaking law has passed that will decriminalise abortion and ensure women and pregnant people seeking abortions have compassionate healthcare.
Read More

Story

Package supports Kiwis to put collective health first

The Green Party says that the measures announced by the Government today will help families and businesses to prioritise our collective health and ...
Read More

Story

Strengthening New Zealand’s Immunisation System

Hundreds of thousands of young adults will be offered measles vaccinations in a new campaign to strengthen New Zealand’s immunisation system, Assoc...
Read More

Latest Drug Law Reform Announcements

Story

Green Party says Kiwis now have clear decision to make on legal and controlled cannabis

The Green Party says New Zealanders now have a clear vision of how a safe, regulated cannabis market would work in Aotearoa, with the release of th...
Read More

Policy

Drug Reform Policy

Drug use should be treated as a health issue and the Government’s focus should be on reducing harm to New Zealanders. Drugs can cause harm but not ...
See More

Story

Green Party welcome festival drug checking research to prove harm reduction approach

“In an ideal world, communities would be completely free of drug use, where we all thrive and live healthy lives. Yet forty years of punitive legal...
Read More

Story

Medicinal Cannabis regulations mean final Christmas of suffering for many New Zealanders

​The Green Party welcome medicinal cannabis regulations released today that will ensure timely treatment for suffering patients.
Read More

Story

Roadside Drug Testing to be Introduced

Police will be given new powers to conduct random roadside oral fluid drug testing to deter, detect and prosecute drugged drivers in order to save ...
Read More

Story

Draft bill will ensure informed referendum debate on cannabis control and regulation

The Green Party welcome draft legislation for the cannabis referendum which will provide the information required for a constructive debate on a co...
Read More