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Greencross Hopes NZ Law Commission Continues Supporting Medical Cannabis

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Greencross Hopes NZ Law Commission Continues Supporting Medical Cannabis

Greencross Auckland said it hopes the Law Commission will continue supporting legal access to medical cannabis in its final report on New Zealand's drug laws due out any day.

"The government needs to accept that cannabis is an effective and safe medicine for a range of conditions, and that sick, dying and disabled New Zealanders deserve safe legal access to it," said Stephen McIntyre, spokesperson for the medicinal cannabis users support group today.

This week, Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne claimed he wanted synthetic cannabis-like drugs currently sold in dairies banned but was unable to do so he because Government had its 'hands tied' by current drug laws.

Mr McIntyre said there are patients currently using these synthetic cannabis-type drugs but that they were doing so out of necessity, not preference.

"Everyone I've met agrees that real cannabis is much better medicinally and that the only reason they buy an inferior product is because of safety - both from the law as well as the black market.

"Sick, dying and disabled people don't want to have to visit 'tinny shops' to buy their medicine; they don't want to deal with dodgy people, selling dodgy drugs at inflated prices."

"People that are unwell have the right to access medicine and therapies where efficacy and safety have been established; they deserve far more dignity than the current law allows," Mr McIntyre said.

In its draft paper released last year, the Law Commission said that herbal cannabis has historically been used for medicinal purposes and it saw no reason why it shouldn't be legally allowed here under medical supervision.

It also said that cultivators of cannabis should be licensed in the same way as other legitimate dealers in controlled drugs, and that registered patients should be able to obtain prescriptions for cannabis from their doctor, specialist or another authorized prescriber.

Last year, the New Zealand Medical Association came out publicly in support of the Law Commission's proposal allowing for medicinal cannabis use.

"The Law Commission's final report on drug laws is due out very soon. We hope it continues proposing that medicinal cannabis be regulated with bone fide patients receiving safe legal access to the whole plant," Mr McIntyre concluded.

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