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Drug law reform a health issue

The Green Party is offering to work with other political parties on evidence-based drug law reform and welcomes Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne’s suggestion that drugs be viewed as a health issue.

Peter Dunne was reported today as saying that he was open to reviewing evidence around the decriminalisation of cannabis, and that he was unsure that New Zealand’s drug law was still fit for purpose.

“It is fantastic to hear that the Government is considering regulating drugs in terms of their potential for harm,” Green Party health spokesperson Kevin Hague said.

“It is time for New Zealand to ditch its outdated drug laws, and for Parliament to work together to come up with a new regime that will work to reduce the harm of drugs.

“The evidence points to a complete failure on the war on drugs style approach. If we are looking to decrease harm and decrease supply, the evidence is that the war on drugs has failed.

“The Green Party is currently reviewing its own policy on drug law reform but has not reached a position on the decriminalisation of cannabis.

“Fundamentally, drug laws should protect people from the harm of drugs, not cause more harm.

“The Green Party is happy to work with all parties on changing these outdated laws, and would welcome working with the Government and other parties on cannabis law reform,” Mr Hague said.