I read that the NZ Associate Health minister (resp. Drug policy) has said that Drug laws need to be viewed as a ‘Health Issue’. This is apparently the approach that will be taken to UNGASS in April. Maybe the minister has finally accepted (after many other OECD/western countries already reformed their laws) that the current/outdated ‘zero-tolerance’ Law Enforcement approach has failed to meet its stated objectives?!
The Green party Health spokesperson made these comments:
“It is fantastic to hear that the Government is considering regulating drugs in terms of their potential for harm”
“It is time for New Zealand to ditch its outdated drug laws, and for Parliament to work together to come up with a new regime that will work to reduce the harm of drugs.”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.”
“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“The Green Party is happy to work with all parties on changing these outdated laws, and would welcome working with the Government and other parties on cannabis law reform,”
** we shall see.. over the next couple of months, whether this ‘tiny step forward’ is just more rhetoric OR the start of genuine reforms