I recently saw a TV program, that showed the ‘opening addresses’ of NZ political parties, standing in the general election (20/9/14).. one party mentioned specifically, the current cost to NZ tax-payers for maintaining drug prohibition : aprox. $100million/year (most spent on cannabis seizures)
I can not confirm this cost, BUT I do know that about 15-20% of adult kiwis do use cannabis in varying amounts (amongst highest level) & between 5,000-10,000 arrests per annum, based on info. I’ve seen (also amongst the highest levels per capita)
If you look at the facts : Police, Customs, Courts & Corrections all contribute to the cost (prohibition industry)
I for one, would rather they stop WASTING this money on this failed policy & redirect it to : EDUCATION, harm minimisation, Health-care, treatment & rehab.
IF prohibition was working, we would have lower levels of use & lower arrest rates.. I hear that these levels do actually drop in countries that have the GUTS to look beyond this failed policy & move to alternatives : REGULATION !
I can only hope that the ‘power brokers’ wake up & realise this, in the not to distant future..