This is an open letter to the Associate Minister of Health, Aotearoa/NZ:
United Future MP
Minister responsible for Drug Policy
Kia ora minister,
I think it is well past due that; terminally ill people in Aotearoa/NZ, should be exempted from prosecution, as in other OECD countries. The UN convention 1961, in the opening ‘preamble’ statement says that all drugs in the schedule should be available for ‘medical & scientific’ uses & also industrial. It would only require that GP doctors could issue such a card (as in California) to a patient, who could benefit from it. This would effectively allow them to legally buy & use ‘black-market’ cannabis (in lieu of the lack of any legal alternative at this time). I don’t even think it would require any substantive changes to the Misuse of Drugs act 1975, as exemptions already allow medicinal use. You could also consider allowing either licensed importation or local licensed cultivation, to ensure a valid, legal supply to such patients.. perhaps sold in ‘off license dispensaries’
This country, was once a world leader.. first to allow women vote etc. BUT on this issue, we are squarely at the ‘back of the pack’:
1) USA allows medicinal (29 states) & some personal use
2) Canada allows med-use at a provincial level & is considering further reforms for personal use
3) Holland has allowed regulated cannabis use since 1970s
4) much of EU allow medicinal uses. Spain & Portugal allow adults regulated uses
5) even UK is more relaxed on med-use than this Govt.
6) Australia is allowing licensed cultivation for med-use. They already have ‘decrim. personal use’ in several states
7) North Korea don’t consider cannabis to be a harmful drug
8) Uruguay has effectively legalised all use of cannabis
BUT there are other countries that also, like us, have zero-tolerance:
9) Philippines, gangs of gunmen, gunning down users & street dealers, all OK with the authorities
10) Indonesia, still have the death penalty available for cannabis importation. Still execute ‘drug traffickers’
BUT do we really want to be associated with these extremists ?
You could allow drug laws to be administered at the regional council level (similar to states/provinces in USA & Canada) eg Northland, Auckland, Waikato, Central NI, Taranaki, East Cape, Capital, Top of south, Central SI, Otago/Sthld, West coast etc. Police to be ‘directed by council’ not central Govt. on local policy as with Alcohol & other ‘legal highs’.
Drug law reform