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National is jamming cannabis law reform

Written By: - Date published: 10:47 am, July 27th, 2018 - 82 comments
Categories: crime, death with dignity, Deep stuff, drugs, greens, labour, national, same old national, the praiseworthy and the pitiful - Tags:

So National be getting pretty liberal with the Marijuana stuff.

National’s cannabis announcement reminds me for some strange reason of that infamous Simpsons episode where Chief Wiggums discovers the magic of ganga. It was a scene where not much happened apart from him singing to a Bob Marley song. But I am sure that most baby boomers smiled when they watched it.

Cannabis law reform throughout the world has been a major movement in the past few years. Lets be clear, it is a trojan horse. After you agree that those who are terminally ill and find that the effect of cannabis is much better than the effects of opiates should have a choice it is a slippery slope to decriminalisation.  At least this is the fear of conservatives.  they are right to be afraid.

And then when you consider the downsides of the use of cannabis and realise that alcohol and tobacco are legal substances but cannabis is not you start to scratch your head.

Over the past few years in Aotearoa New Zealand there has been a vigorous debate about cannabis law reform. Helen Kelly is the reason. That such an intelligent compassionate person had to try and jump so many hoops in a failed attempt to legally get good quality pain relief that did not zap her brain is a sad indictment of the state of the law.

This is how Helen described it:

I am taking Cannabis Oil to manage my pain as my lung cancer takes over my body. It’s sort of as simple as that really. For some people talking about dying is confronting but actually talking about it allows us to think about how it happens – it is actually as much a social event as a physical one and knowing someone is comfortable, getting good treatment and pain relief is very much part of the social dimension as the physical one.

Since I have been public about it I have received so many very very sad emails from families also wanting access. Children with brain tumours, partners in their last stages of life zonked out on morphine and wanting something less brain numbing, people with elderly parents who are suffering from terrible arthritis and can’t cope with opiates so are basically in pain constantly and unable to move etc. It really has been incredible and quite heart breaking. Many are resorting to illegal supplies and this in itself is so far from satisfactory. They have no idea what the strength of the product is or what it even has in it some of the time. In countries which allow medical cannabis these things are sorted – Doctors are trained on its use and products are tailored to kids, elderly etc etc.

I might be able to get permission from our esteemed Associate Minister of Health to access a medical product. I have to apply. This actually requires me to find a product, contact the producer, convince my doctors to support my application (which I think they will do, but they will have to jump through hoops and wouldn’t it be better if they were like US doctors – trained in the various products, able to understand them and prescribe them based on their knowledge not mine) and then meet the Ministry of Health criteria which includes that other available drugs have been tried and don’t work – not that cannabis works better!

This is something I wrote in January:

National has this weird approach to drug reform.  They hate the idea of any sort of drugs liberalisation.

Their position is difficult to rationalise.  Alcohol is accepted, presumably because there is a good profit to be made if it is done right.  But the mention of Cannabis causes all sorts of ructions to occur.

It is hard to understand why.  Sure Cannabis can for a small part of the population cause considerable problems.  But for most of us it is a coming of age drug.  You cannot claim to have been through university in the 1970s or 1980s or 1990s and not have at least a nodding acquaintance with the drug.

And the problems caused by alcohol are legendary.  Yet there is this strange double standard.  Alcohol is fine but cannabis reform is somehow taboo.

Such is the moral panic associated with cannabis that the last Government thought it better to prohibit the use of the drug for medicinal purposes unless applicants jumped through all sorts of hoops rather than allowing people dying of cancer the ability to use the drug for simple pain relief.  According to their view it was better that people die in pain and doped up to the eyeballs on morphine based drugs than actually use something that many have reported provides the best pain relief they can ask for.

Helen Kelly had to go through this.  That an intelligent capable woman who understood what was best for her body was not trusted with making a decision on what was best for her still rankles.

This was written at the time that National and New Zealand First voted down Chloe Swarbrick’s private member’s bill seeking to allow medicinal cannabis.  The bill was not a stunning effort, but it should have been introduced and sent to select committee for consideration.  New Zealand First and National voted against the bill.  They gave their more liberal members public cover to support it but then all their members voted against the bill.

At the same time Labour introduced its bill which to be frank was very timid.  National allowed this bill to go to select committee but then decided to oppose it.

The select committee report back shows that the parties were hopelessly gridlocked.

The bill was not great.  It was weakened by the need to accommodate New Zealand First’s views.  It clearly could have been improved.  Which is why National’s announced private members bill was such a strange response.  Why not seek to improve the existing bill by proposing changes?

The report back is interesting.  This is National’s reason for not supporting the bill as it is:

We heard from the public and medical community that there may be a place for medicinal cannabis and we support this being added to the tool set that medical practitioners can utilise. We have heard that current pricing and availability are restrictive and we seek to improve the availability and affordability of medicinal cannabis for clinical indications. Underpinning medicinal cannabis there needs to be a robust regulatory framework for the pathway from cultivation to dispensing. These details and associated parliamentary oversight are absent from this bill.

Addressing the three main aims to the bill, we are supportive of improved access to cannabidiol which we are told has negligible psychoactive properties.

We understand the goals of the terminal exemption and statutory defence for terminal patients but we believe there is too much uncertainty around the logistics of supply. We are uncomfortable that exercise of the terminal exemption and the statutory defence requires the illegal act of supplying cannabis to be committed.

This bill seeks blanket regulation making authority for a full medicinal cannabis scheme for which no details have been presented. We believe issues such as medicinal cannabis manufacture, eligibility, dispensing, monitoring, and reporting are important and we are unable to support a bill that does not submit details of such a scheme to public and parliamentary scrutiny.

So National opposed Swarbrick’s bill that would decriminalise possession for medicinal reasons and also opposed Labour’s bill because it did not provide details on how the supply chain would be regulated.

And maybe Labour does not need the new regulation making power.  After all the existing legislation includes the ability to make regulations “providing for the issue of licences for the import, export, possession, production, manufacture, procuring, supply, administration, or use of controlled drugs and the cultivation of prohibited plants”.

Here is the text of the bill.  There are significant differences.  But National could propose its bill as a SOP.  Maybe Labour should put up National’s bill as a SOP.  National could hardly refuse to vote for it.

The bill looks like a serious attempt to change the law although the released draft has some holes in it.

Politically National’s stance is quite clever. National is masquerading as if it is the saviour of the medicinal cannabis organisation but if you look at the history it has stifled meaningful change every step of the way.

And here is the reason why urgent law reform is needed.  Not only to allow people with serious pain issues to seek respite but also so that young people will stop killing themselves using a manufactured equivalent.

From Katie Doyle at Radio New Zealand:

Provisional figures from the coroner show between 40 – 45 people died in the year since last June – in the previous five years there was only one death.

The figures are causing doctors, families and the Drug Foundation to call for swift action to get it off the streets.

Synthetic cannabis was outlawed in 2014, and before that, it could be bought over the counter at the local dairy.

St John Ambulance said it received about 30 callouts a week from people in trouble after taking the drug.

A doctor in the Wellington hospital’s emergency department, Paul Quigley, said deaths were increasing because batches were becoming too potent for the body to handle.

The batches were manufactured from chemicals discarded by pharmaceutical companies, he said.

“The pharmaceutical companies are spending billions of dollars in trying to work out what parts of the cannabis plant could be used as a pharmaceutical drug to relieve pain, stop seizures, help people with a condition known as spasticity.”

Those drugs were then thrown out by the companies, and picked up by the black market.

The people who are dying tend to be young and poor.  In West Auckland for instance there have been far too many young people whose lives have been ended far too soon by use of the zombie drug.

If National’s policy is a good faith attempt to improve matters then good on it.  If it is a cynical attempt to gain political advantage without any meaningful change being made then shame on it.

82 comments on “National is jamming cannabis law reform”

  1. esoteric pineapples 1

    The term “Synthetic cannabis” is a slur against cannabis by equating a natural plant with other unpleasant man made drugs that have nothing to do with cannabis.
    Calling something synthenic cannabis is the same as calling something that is not a carrot “synthetic carrot”

    • Draco T Bastard 1.1

      +111

    • AsleepWhileWalking 1.2

      And the real stuff is much cheaper. I am referring to that fake option Drs prescribe

    • bwaghorn 1.3

      A bit like Frankin meat and squashed something milk

    • NZJester 1.4

      A synthetic carrot you buy from a store would likely be less toxic to your body if you consumed it than synthetic cannabis. That is considering what they sell in stores are made of painted plastic or rubber and meant as a toy.

    • Incognito 1.5

      With all due respect, I’m afraid your ignorant bias shows though in your comment.

      So-called synthetic cannabis is closely related to ‘the real thing’ and often designed using the natural product as the blueprint. They also bind to the same receptors, which, surprisingly enough, are called cannabinoid receptors. But man-made/synthetic=bad and nature=good, by default, of course.

      Why do some (?) people appear to derive some moral justification from Nature, often ‘qualified’ as common sense?

      • adam 1.5.1

        A highly politicised and truly misinformed comment I think I’ve ever read Incognito, really up there.

        Whilst the research did start around trying to synthesis cannabis, what we have now is not even close. The only thing they are looking for is activating the same part of the brain stimulated by THC. So to call it synthetic cannabis now is a political term, not an accurate disibtion of the reality how what is on the market, what is being sold now, it is not even in the same school as the original synthetic reproductions of cannabis.

        Just look up some examples of the Chemical Chains involved.

        Do I have to mention, that the factories which are making these products are truly cowboy outfits coming out of the back blocks.

        If you think that that synthetic cannabis is good or better because it’s man made, your mad.

        There are no fatal overdose cases linked to cannabis (you know the natural stuff), yet we are now seeing deaths associated with synthetic cannabinoids.

        • Incognito 1.5.1.1

          If you think that that synthetic cannabis is good or better because it’s man made, your mad.[sic]

          Here we go again: somebody who miserably fails English reading comprehension as well as English grammar.

          Synthetic cannabis (better: cannabinoids) may have evolved but still generally aim to mimic the effects of THC. So, to state “unpleasant man made drugs that have nothing to do with cannabis” (by esoteric pineapples @ 1) is ignorant and highly politicised, which is the point I made @ 1.5.

          I have no idea how to “look up some examples of the Chemical Chains involved” because I have no idea what you mean by that and my Chemistry was pretty good last time I checked. Just to stimulate a constructive response from you, you do realise that a pharmacophore (model) may have no resemblance to the original binding drug to the untrained eye? In fact, the similarities often only become apparent using a 3D computer model of the target cannabinoid receptor and the binding molecules.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pharmacophore

          But you obviously know all this and (much?) more …

          You also seem to know a lot more than I do about “cowboy outfits coming out of the back blocks” …

          Lastly, do you have any ideas as to why synthetic cannabinoids cause more harm than the “natural stuff” and even deaths?

          • Timeforacupoftea 1.5.1.1.1

            These deaths are superior to testing on animals.

          • adam 1.5.1.1.2

            You’re the one who ran with synthetic cannabis being based on real cannabis incognito. And used it to score political points.

            I just pointed out that is no longer the reality.

            Because the reality is, the stuff on the streets is no longer what synthetic cannabis was. And I agree the original drugs begun life trying to synthesize THC – now it is somthing almost completely different.

            It kills people precisely because it does not do what THC from organic cannabis does.

            Was that too hard to extract from what I wrote?

            Obviously – otherwise you would not have done the whole spin attack the write thing you did.

            • joe90 1.5.1.1.2.1

              Synthetics are a replica, an agonist, that binds to a receptor and activates the receptor to produce a response.

              Problem is, they’re shoddily made, imperfect replicas that do the job of activating cannabinoid receptors along with a host of other things, some of which are fatal.

              • adam

                “do the job of activating cannabinoid receptors along with a host of other things”

                Which is what I was saying – hence why it’s political to call them synthetic cannabis. They don’t just activate that part of the brain cannabis does. It’s not they are just shoddy ( and yes many are) , it’s that are somthing new, with more constituents causing new effects.

            • Incognito 1.5.1.1.2.2

              O.k. Adam, it is obvious that you are convinced that I want to score political points and won’t change your mind on this despite me explaining that I want to expose ignorant bias on behalf of esoteric pineapples @ 1 and of you as well, it seems.

              Pray tell, what you think my motivation is for this ‘point scoring”. I can’t wait for the full ‘psychological report ’by you through remote diagnosis – you’re not a paranormal medium by any chance, are you? That would worry me no end …

              Obviously – otherwise you would not have done the whole spin attack the write thing you did.

              Uhhmm, yes, correcting blatant mis- and disinformation is labelled as a “whole spin attack”. Your argument is elegant in its stupidity.

              You seem to know much more than you give away about “the factories which are making these products are truly cowboy outfits coming out of the back blocks” and:

              Because the reality is, the stuff on the streets is no longer what synthetic cannabis was. And I agree the original drugs begun life trying to synthesize THC – now it is somthing almost completely different.[sic]

              Have you don’t an in-depth investigation of this and are you aware of a scientific report with chemical analyses of “the stuff on the streets”? With your extensive chemical and pharmacological knowledge it should be easy to explain what you are talking about but you just keep repeating the same factoids and innuendo.

              It kills people precisely because it does not do what THC from organic cannabis does.

              Really? Have you got links to substantiate this and to support your assertion that synthetic cannabinoids, in fact, do not mimic THC and, in fact, do not exert their action through binding to the same cannabinoid receptors as THC?

              You have not the faintest idea what you are talking about, do you? For others (!) who read this thread, synthetic cannabinoids are much more potent than THC, lead to a complete stimulation of the cannabinoid receptors upon binding unlike the partial activation by THC (cf. the comment by joe90 @ 1.5.1.1.2.1), do have much higher purity than THC, and, most importantly, users have no idea what they are using and how much of it.

              The synthetics may indeed have a raft of pharmacological actions and toxicological effects – there are many around and few have been properly studied – but their main mode of action still is binding and stimulating cannabinoid receptors, just like THC.

              Was that too hard to extract from what I wrote?

              Except for your dumbfounding ignorance on the subject and your refusal to educate yourself there was nothing to “extract”.

  2. Draco T Bastard 2

    If National’s policy is a good faith attempt to improve matters then good on it. If it is a cynical attempt to gain political advantage without any meaningful change being made then shame on it.

    It’s National politicking with peoples lives while also working to ensure multi-national companies can make a profit.

  3. AsleepWhileWalking 3

    For me the drug issue goes back to money and practicality.

    1. Our health system is wasting money on pain meds, and if patients could grow their own or legally purchase this money could be better allocated to nurses, elective surgeries and the like.

    2. Why are we opting to use drugs that aren’t as safe or effective as they could be?

    Crazy. Only a politician with a lobby group at the forefront of his mind would be against this.

    Marijuana is not even a gateway drug ffs.

    • Gosman 3.1

      How about you let people grow their own Opium or even manufacture Meth to control pain. Are you okay with that?

      • AsleepWhileWalking 3.1.1

        We weren’t actually discussing those drugs.

      • Cinny 3.1.2

        Gosman, you can’t grow P and it does not do shite for pain… why even go there, that’s a stupid as troll-low-lowly suggestion.

        One can grow opium poppies, fun fact… there are plenty of them in the garden at the oldies village around these parts, But I won’t pass judgement. Not for profit medicine gardens have been around since the beginning of time.

        For instance, grow a specific type of valerian, and once the roots are a couple of years old, harvest the roots, dry them, grind them and that is the main ingredient in valium.

        But we aren’t talking about that… just wanted to address your narrative changing question.

        • Gosman 3.1.2.1

          I’m pretty sure if I’m on Meth I will feel a whole lot better pain wise.

          • SpaceMonkey 3.1.2.1.1

            Why bother with P when I can assure you the headache I get when reading most of your posts disappears when high.

          • Cinny 3.1.2.1.2

            Gosman, I’ll leave you to make your own choices.

            As for me I’m pro pot and anti P.

        • Rosemary McDonald 3.1.2.2

          “Not for profit medicine gardens have been around since the beginning of time. ”

          Free the plant.

          https://www.nzherald.co.nz/northern-advocate/news/article.cfm?c_id=1503450&objectid=12094463

          https://www.nzherald.co.nz/health/news/article.cfm?c_id=204&objectid=11964691

          In response to Labour’s Bill….

          ” Mrs Aldridge said they would be putting an image of a big cannabis leaf on their doors this festive season instead of the traditional Christmas wreath. She said the group wanted those suffering from extreme pain, with a medical certificate, to be able to grow their own cannabis to relieve their pain.

          ”At Christmas time, when we celebrate the gift of life through the birth of Christ, we must now also suffer Judas’ kiss of death, with the denial of access to one of God’s greatest plant gifts,” Mrs Aldridge said.

          ”We are commemorating a week of mourning from December 25 to January 1, for the continued denial of this wonderful, health-giving plant for the people of New Zealand, and the persecution, prosecution and incarceration of New Zealanders who want and need access to cannabis. We are placing a picture of the cannabis leaf on our front doors, as a symbol of protection from illnesses.”

          She said the new law would still mean those in pain having to fork out more than $1000 a month to access pharmaceutical-grade medicinal cannabis products.

          ”It’s silly to make people spend that amount of money to ease their pain when they could be growing their own. We want to be able to grow the plant so they can put it in smoothies and juices, with no desire to smoke it. It’s a natural product that is proven to relieve pain,” she said.”

          • Cinny 3.1.2.2.1

            Cheers for the links Rosemary.

            “Free the Plant”

            One of the oldies next door suffers from pain, he is doped up to the eyeballs on opiates and he hates it, it’s really messing with him, the side effects sound worse than the relief.

      • Tricledrown 3.1.3

        Gooseman You have agreed to decriminalizing all drugs before now you are supporting Nationals Bill for political point scoring.
        Decriminalisation doesn’t mean legalising like you are implying.
        The Police even now have said they are not focusing on users but on suppliers and those directives came from your National govt.

        • Gosman 3.1.3.1

          I do support legalizing and regulating ALL drugs. Hence why this approach to “medicinal cannabis” is a joke. Even National’s approach is a joke. If you want to use Marijuana as a medicine then treat it like every other medicine.

      • thinkaboutit 3.1.4

        Gosman go back to 50s and watch some happy days. That comment shows that your intellect is blinded by your misguided emotions.

        To put meth and opium in the same basket as cannabis is just braindead.

        If you look at the harm index alcohol trumps all other drugs but i can legally home brew.

        Pretty retarded concept isnt it. I can legally manufacture and posses the most socially harmfull drug .

        Ever had a drink in your life Gosman?? If we are talking about drugs then you must be evil because according to science you partake in evil ..

        See i know i sound like braindead moron , i am just trying to reach out to you on your level

        https://www.google.co.nz/search?q=drug+harm+index&rlz=1C1GGGE___NZ583NZ587&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwiH9Zzi1r7cAhXEdt4KHXnfAb8Q_AUICigB&biw=1536&bih=711#imgrc=4dyT-3gOu4CwqM:

      • reason 3.1.5

        We let them produce their own ethanol …. including distilling it.

        Ethanol / Alcohol is the drug with the closest characteristics to Petrol …. unlike Cannabis it does kill brain cells …. especially any non-drinking babies in the womb ( fetal alcohol syndrome ),…… it is associated with crimes of violence … causes overdoses and addiction.

        And National is so far up the arse of the Alcohol drug industry ….. that Judith collins says ….. ‘ let them self regulate ‘ …. the alcohol strength in roastbusters RTDs …

        What was your point again Gosman ? National are pro the drug ethanol

      • Shona 3.1.6

        Gosman you ignoramus “people” already do. Since when has meth been a painkiller? you moron. You don’t understand the issue because you are an uninformed dickhead. Just fuck off!

    • dukeofurl 3.2

      “Our health system is wasting money on pain meds,”

      Oh really, and yet you suggest a replacement which a clinical study found wasnt that good at pain relief ( it did help them sleep better!)

    • the other pat 3.3

      well i disagree….it is a gateway drug of first choice like alcohol and for SOME leads to heavier drugs.
      i do agree withe rest tho but would like to see the “off your face” bitz taken out for the pain application general use.
      for more terminal folks maybe they might prefer the whole thing!
      and yeah i smoked in my younger days and it did me no harm except maybe some lung chit i guess but i have observed many many muppets who all they care about its lighting up…….these are the ones i am concerned about esp youth…..its an outright lie that it cannot fuck you up!

      • Shona 3.3.1

        It’s an outright FACT that prohibition leads to high THC cannabis being produced in preference to other types. High THC cannabis is very effective in the treatment of terminal cancer pain however. Cannabis has many healing properties AND DOES NOT NEED TO BE SMOKED to be useful and effective. It Is a muscle relaxant . We have endocabinoid receptors built into our DNA because homo sapiens has used this plant for millennia. WAKE THE FUCK UP! NZ i s so backward the level of debate here is woeful.

  4. Gosman 4

    Medicinal cannabis should not get special treatment over any other form of medicines. Just because it is Cannabis makes people think we should not have any regulation around it.

    • mickysavage 4.1

      Well opiates are prescribed regularly for pain management but for cannabinoids there are all sorts of hoops to jump through. I agree about how special treatment is wrong.

    • Stuart Munro 4.2

      The legitimacy of private drug manufacture is a function of safety.

      At present one may grow valerian or diviners sage with impunity, as well as purchase a much stronger drug popular in the middle ages as a baking ingredient.

      It is the safety of marijuana that makes contemporary restrictive regulation of it an impropriety. It simply doesn’t create the issues other drugs do.

      Current law is an anomaly and a function of political cowardice.

      • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1

        Current law is based upon racism.

        • Stuart Munro 4.2.1.1

          My understanding is that it’s an imperial legacy, and relates to uninformed speculation about causes of civil unrest in Egypt under the so-called “veiled protectorate”. The civil service of the period knew less than nothing about the motivations of Ahmed On-the-Street, but they had all read the histories of Rashid ad-Din Sinan, the Old Man of the Mountain, and his cadre of assassins.

          • Draco T Bastard 4.2.1.1.1

            Anti-marijuana law was passed in NZ in 1921 and, according to the article that I can no longer find (although I think I linked to it a few weeks ago), it was definitely a law that was passed based upon racism.

            • Stuart Munro 4.2.1.1.1.1

              That’s odd – there was a local law passed in Alexandria apparently, but in England (from whom the perpetually drunk and useless NZ MPs generally took their cues) the ban apparently dates from 1927, in the wake of a league of nations conference.

    • Shona 4.3

      Why? because ignorant dickheads like you have zero understanding of how effective it would be in reducing the country’s pharma account?You pathetic prude Gosman you don’t know what you”re talking about.

  5. AsleepWhileWalking 5

    Once taxes are added to the legal cannabis it would probably be enough to fund a small DHB.

  6. Dennis Frank 6

    So far, just looks like the Nats trying to compete with the Labs as usual. The coalition bill being inadequate, they front up with another just as bad but with different inadequacies. It’s market-driven thinking. You compete by differentiating the product. Both dinosaur parties are trying to sell a pig: Labour puts red lipstick on theirs, National puts blue lipstick on theirs. The voters are meant to think “Gee, what lovely pigs, which one should I buy?”

  7. The Toxic Avenger 7

    Its amazing what you can live without.
    Me:
    no shampoo in last 8 years
    no prescriptions or pharmacy purchases in 5 years
    no real doctors assistance in last 5 plus years
    no soap in last 5 months
    only shower once a week
    rubbish bins emptied once every 2 years
    no vehicle use including public transport last 1.5 years
    no new clothes or appliances etc last 5 years
    no plane travel last 20 years

    Awaken from the dream and free your mind and our mother planet
    Melvin

  8. adam 8

    Labour have proven to be right royal scumbags on this issue. The lie before coming to office is just standard from them now.

    Proven by the pittiful weak and insipid law, is just another classic example of the weakness of liberalism.

    Then again, I supposed the whole cowardly thing is infectious, and this attempt at reform shows just how cowardly it gets for this government. Not one reform they have tried is inspired, not one reform has much mana at all.

    Let’s face it, david clark has proven himself to be feckless craven tool.

    I expected to much I guess. A government to actually listen to submissions of informed lay people and experts. Instead they went all craven, the Tory bill looks more enlightened.

    • Bearded Git 8.1

      Yes but this is good Adam because it leaves space at the election for the true party of the Left; the Greens.

  9. esoteric pineapples 9

    The problem for anyone being honest about their use of marijuana, is that they are likely to get a visit from the police. And here-in lies one of the fundamental problems for people who want to see it legalised. The moment they start giving their views, they make themselves the target of arrest. How can any proper debate on marijuana be possible under such conditions?

    • adam 9.1

      You have to do what I’ve done, not use cannabis whilst pushing for changes.

      You have to make it so the police and craven politicians have nothing they can use against you.

      If that means using legal opioids, and the added cost to the health system because of that use – then so be it.

      • The Toxic Avenger 9.1.1

        dont need either once you awaken from the dream

        • adam 9.1.1.1

          Say’s the able bodies one.

          Any chance you could stop smelling your own shit and realise a majority of disabled people can’t run with your little subculture.

    • Dennis Frank 9.2

      You bet. I’ve known highly-successful users since the early seventies. Testimony from them would have always provided a positive alternative to media-driven loser put-downs. The coercion resulting from the law always deprived them of the right of free speech that would have enabled them to testify.

      You could lose your career as well as your freedom in the old days. Now you can lose your home if you grow or sell some to friends, since the law allows confiscation of the proceeds of crime. Users are still waiting for the minority rights feminists & gays won decades back.

  10. Cinny 10

    Dirty ole national kicking it around like a political football, after nine years of nada.

    Word on the street is full scale laughter at this latest attempt by national to desperately gain any traction. No one believes their intentions, the anti cannabis party suddenly out of the blue turning over a ‘new leaf’ LMFAO. Thought it was fake news first time I heard it and I wasn’t the only one lolz.

    For goodness sake let’s get on with decriminalising or legalising it. Sort it out coalition, please and thank you.

    It’s super embarrassing for the oldies to ask how to get some and how to use it, but most would prefer the option rather than being tanked up on mind numbing opiates.

  11. Netman 11

    Oh its just for cbd from a pharma. We know how much that will cost
    National continue to support large pharma companies. Nothing new here
    It’s a Clayton bill

  12. veutoviper 12

    mickysavage, have you seen Rosemary McDonald’s enlightening comment over at 2 on today’s Open Mike?

    Open Mike 27/07/2018

    It includes this link to a Herald article announcing, as Rosemary very succinctly summarises it, – “Tauranga capitalists jubilant at having secured the exclusive rights to over 30 strains of medical cannabis and intends multi billion dollar operation.”

    http://www2.nzherald.co.nz/the-country/news/article.cfm?c_id=16&objectid=12095931

    Its a “Join the Dots day” today. So National pull their own Medical Cannabis Bill out of the hat earlier in the week; then today this article appears in “The Country”; and this weekend is the National Party’s 2018 Annual Meeting in Auckland (Sky City of course).

    As you say in your post, National have put up some interesting reasons in the Report Back on the Coalition Govt’s Bill including putting up proposals for a new regulatory framework – despite, as you also say, legislative provisions already existing for regulations to be made “providing for the issue of licences for the import, export, possession, production, manufacture, procuring, supply, administration, or use of controlled drugs and the cultivation of prohibited plants”.

    eg

    We have heard that current pricing and availability are restrictive and we seek to improve the availability and affordability of medicinal cannabis for clinical indications. Underpinning medicinal cannabis there needs to be a robust regulatory framework for the pathway from cultivation to dispensing. These details and associated parliamentary oversight are absent from this bill

    So, Medicann, a Tauranga based company, has already tied up exclusive rights to over 30 strains of medicinal cannabis, and are looking to set up a multi-billion dollar industry for growing cannabis. How convenient for National and in particular for their current leader – Simon Bridges.

  13. Gosman 13

    Medicinal marijuana is one area that many lefties seem to want to ignore evidence based policy on (GMO’s is another). It puts a lie to the idea that the left only supports ideas that are supported by facts.

    • Stuart Munro 13.1

      Orly.

      And what are the “facts” from your ill-informed far-right fringe, Gosman?

    • corodale 13.2

    • adam 13.3

      Agree with the first part of your statement Gossy.

      The second is you being hopeful about ‘the left’, a truly odd strawman to try and create Gossy, an odd one.

  14. Tricledrown 14

    Josman it may help with your maniacal far right fits.
    Mello old fellow leave the straight jacketed hypocrisy behind you.

  15. thinkaboutit 15

    Why does the government need to meddle with things that it has very little comprehension of?

    Lets address the elephant in the room quite bluntly. Cannabis is and has been part of New Zealand society for a very long time now. The effects of recreational and medical use are always objectively looked at in a way that is condescending to those with practical experience.

    Statistics will be juggled and shuffled depending upon who and for what reasons they are being applied. Some of the justifications for it being illegal are completely absurd.

    The pseudoscience that companies present is rubbish and only serves their own interests . This one does this ,this one does that. Marketing bullshit disguised as compassionate treatment

    Why cant people just grow and supply themselves with their own medication for a fraction of the cost?

    If a doctor believes that ones quality of life can be improved by consumption of cannabis then they should have the option of providing their own medication .

    The biggest driver of harmful drug use in New Zealand is a result of poor legislation.

    Allowing drug testing in the workplace is the biggest driver of meth use hands down.
    Ideology overriding common sense and practicality .

    The writing is on the wall , Large corporations profiting from government subsidized medicine.

    Their is a synergy between all active compounds that is beyond the comprehension of the human mind. Anecdotal evidence carries far more weight in this area but is not recognized for the merit it carries.

    The sovereignty of the human mind and body should be respected above all other things. If one can not decide what they put into their own body can you truly call yourself free?

    The truth of the matter when it comes to cannabis being illegal is a fact that very few people know. Do your research and ill hear your jaw drop when it hits the floor

  16. greywarshark 16

    There was a suggestion on Radionz this morning that it would be better if the Labour Coalition’s B ill would be better to incorporate some of National’s provisions which would improve the present one. Could this be done?

    • Cinny 16.1

      Hey Grey, I watched outgoing national party leader simon bridges on The Nation this morning.

      It appears to me this current stance is nothing more than a desperate attempt to find a friend. I believe simon and co are after votes and power, rather than the wellbeing of our nation. Side note… could they be looking for a coalition partner by appealing to the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party? Now that would reek of hypocrisy.

      Here’s the link…
      https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/shows/2018/07/put-up-or-shut-up-simon-bridges-talks-tough-to-govt-over-cannabis-bill.html

    • veutoviper 16.2

      Yes, Grey, changes such as those the Nats are seekiing can be incorporated into the existing Coalition Govt’s Bill.

      Rather than putting up a separate Member’s Bill, National should have followed normal procedure of filing a dissenting report from the Nat members of the Select Committee in relation to the formal Report back to the House on the Health Select Committee examination of the Coalition Govt Bill.

      They could (and still can) then put up Supplementary Order Papers (SOPs) to the Coalition Bill during the Second Reading and Committee stages of the full House examination of the Bill and the reports back. SOPs are used to seek agreement of the full House to detailed changes to the Bill during these stages – and thus can be used to put up detailed proposed amendments to try to achieve the different provisions in their separate Member’s Bill.

      As it is, the Nats separate Member’s Bill now goes into the ‘biscuit tin’ with many other Member’s Bills already in there – and may or may not be drawn out in the ballot (lottery) system used to determine which Member’s Bills go forward for consideration by the House. It may sit in there for a very long time (years) before it is lucky enough for its number to be pulled out of the tin.

      https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/bills-and-laws/proposed-members-bills/

      Yes – it is a real, many years old round tin biscuit tin that is used for the Member’s Bill lottery! Here is a YouTube video of a draw from the tin.

      • greywarshark 16.2.1

        Hey all good stuff here. Can’t beat The Standard for bright interesting info. Thanks VV and Cinny.

        I think that we should take help from wherever we can get it for getting good legislation past – well I think I do. Keeping in mind that we might be struck by some climate change thing, or whatever, we can’t afford to fluff around and though Gnashional should have been doing things decades ago and it might make them seem like a really viable political party, let’s just get on and do what we can now and fight them on the beaches when the next election comes. We don’t have decades opening in front of us to carry on these pointless political practices which have been the PPP of our existence for so long.

        We only have now to do things and there are too many who can’t get past 1990
        to face the future’s certainty of uncertainty. And they can’t keep alert and wary to think straegically. Keep trying, have a break and a nosh and a bit of music and R& R and back into it. At least we know we are alive and have something hopeful to work towards. Not like the deadheads with money and nothing positive they want to do with it, or those who have given up and are riddled with drugs or booze and have lost themselves.

  17. justpassingthru 17

    Since it was banned the use of synthetic cannabis has more than doubled and gotten much more potent. So much for prohibition stopping people using it.

  18. veutoviper 18

    All eyes are on the National Party’s 2018 Annual Meeting in Auckland this weekend (their first since their defeat in the 2017 General Election) and IMO their stunt this week of suddenly putting up a new Member’s Bill on medicinal cannabis is connected to seeking PR etc in relation to their conference.

    Thus there is a lot of media reports, interviews etc on Bridges and the Nat party at the moment – but not all are supportive or complimentary.

    Two that have surprise me a little are ones from long standing media who are not known for being left leaning but have been pretty negative about the Nat medicinal cannabis stunt.

    Here is a link to Barry Soper on this subject – far from supportive and callling it cynical and shameful

    https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12095266

    And this Duncan Garner AM show episode yesterday with Judith Collins and Michael Woods where Woods (in his first appearance on the show) pretty much came out the winner as reported by Dan Satherley

    https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/politics/2018/07/national-missed-its-chance-to-lead-on-marijuana-labour-mp-michael-wood.amp.html

    Note this latter one also covers the biscuit tin procedure for Member’s Bills I outlined to Grey at 16.2 above, with another link to a summary of this procedure –
    https://www.newshub.co.nz/home/shows/2018/05/how-a-30-year-old-biscuit-tin-helps-maintain-new-zealand-s-democracy.html

  19. NZJester 19

    Maybe the no mates party is looking at trying to get the legalize marijuana parties to become their friends?

    • Cinny 19.1

      + infinity

    • Sabine 19.2

      well they do need a cause and a some mates.

      honestly tho, the coalition would be smart not to overlook this issue just because they find it uncomfortable.
      If the coalition does nothing then it’s their loss.

  20. Al 20

    To understand the difference between synthetic cannabis and the natural type the metaphor I often use links with alcohol. For example, consider the potency of natural cannabis as a glass of wine and compare this with the potency of synthetic cannabis as a glass of wine with the alcohol content of 5 bottles in that single glass! Brings it home.

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  • What does ‘level two’ mean – and why does it matter?
    For the last few weeks, I’ve been urging you to prepare yourself, your family, business, and community for Covid-19. Now it’s time for real action.  Yesterday the director-general of health Dr Ashley Bloomfield announced another 13 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in New Zealand, bringing our total to date to 52. ...
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  • 2020 SkS Weekly Climate Change & Global Warming News Roundup #12
    A chronological listing of news articles linked to on the Skeptical Science Facebook Page during the past week, i.e., Sun, Mar 15, 2020 through Sat, Mar 21, 2020 Editor's Pick Now Isn’t the Time to Forget About Our Climate Change Efforts   Tasha Tilberg, Lindsey Wixson, and Liu Wen photographed ...
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  • Is the Guardian becoming  a real newspaper again?
    by Jan Rivers The article has been corrected to show that it was Ewen MacAskill, former Guardian journalist and not Luke Harding who travelled to meet Edward Snowden with journalist Glenn Greenwald and filmmaker Laura Poitras.  Some of the Guardian’s well-known journalists who did not sign the protest letter are ...
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  • Life asserts itself regardless
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  • Politics, the possible, and the pandemic
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  • The Only Way Through This Crisis Is Together.
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  • GFC vs Covid-19
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  • Nobody Left Behind.
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  • Rebuilding a truly “Democratic” counter, or a “moderate Republican” bolt-hol...
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  • Abortion law reform a win for women
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  • How to spot bogus science stories and read the news like a scientist
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    2 weeks ago
  • Why New Zealand needs to continue decisive action to contain coronavirus
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    2 weeks ago
  • Parliament and the pandemic II
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    No Right TurnBy Idiot/Savant
    2 weeks ago

  • Advance payments to support contractors
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    4 hours ago
  • Government seeks infrastructure projects
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    14 hours ago
  • Essential media COVID-19 guidelines refined
    The Government is refining its COVID-19 essential business guidance to include the distribution of news publications for communities which are hard to reach. The Minister of Broadcasting, Communications and Digital Media, Kris Faafoi, said the move was in recognition of the importance for New Zealanders who might be harder to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    16 hours ago
  • New Zealand defence personnel conclude mission at Taji
    Following the successful conclusion of the Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji, New Zealand defence personnel are returning to New Zealand from Iraq, in accordance with the Cabinet decision made in June 2019, Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters and Defence Minister Ron Mark announced today. “New Zealand is very ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    20 hours ago
  • State of National Emergency extended
    The State of National Emergency to help stop the spread of COVID-19 has been extended for a further seven days, Minister of Civil Defence Peeni Henare said. The initial declaration on March 25 lasted seven days and can be extended as many times as necessary. “Since we went into isolation ...
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    20 hours ago
  • Strong Govt books support ‘go hard, go early’ response
    New Zealand’s ability to go hard and go early in the fight against COVID-19 has been underpinned by strong Government finances and the growing economy heading into this global pandemic, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. The Treasury today released the Crown financial statements for the eight months to the end ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    23 hours ago
  • Christchurch Hospital Hagley ICU to open to support COVID-19 response
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    2 days ago
  • Government supports Air NZ freight flights
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    2 days ago
  • Tariff concessions on COVID-19 related products
    New Zealand will temporarily remove tariffs on all medical and hygiene imports needed for the COVID-19 response. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker and Commerce and Consumer Affairs Minister Kris Faafoi said today that the New Zealand Customs Service will apply tariff concessions to all diagnostic reagents and testing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    4 days ago
  • Clarification of modification to wage subsidy scheme
    Minister of Finance Grant Robertson has clarified that the changes to the wage subsidy scheme announced yesterday mean that employers should be passing on the full subsidy to workers, except in the case where the person’s normal income is less than the level of the subsidy. “We still want employers ...
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    4 days ago
  • Face masks flowing to DHBs
    Medical face masks from the national reserve supply are now being distributed to District Health Boards, while at the same time local production is being ramped up. Yesterday more than 640,000 masks were sent to DHBS – that is an immediate two week supply, with more to follow in coming ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    5 days ago
  • COVID-19: Further steps to protect New Zealanders’ jobs
    The Government has made modifications to the wage subsidy scheme to ensure people don’t lose their jobs during the national lockdown. These changes will soften the impact of COVID-19 on workers, families and businesses, and position them to exit the lockdown and look to recovery, Finance Minister Grant Robertson says. ...
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    5 days ago
  • Tax relief for Mycoplasma Bovis farmers
    Farmers whose herds were culled in response to the outbreak of Mycoplasma bovis will be able to minimise the tax treatment of their income in some circumstances. Revenue Minister Stuart Nash says Cabinet has agreed to change the law. It means farmers may be eligible to spread their income over ...
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    5 days ago
  • $27 million for NGOs and community groups to continue providing essential services
    A $27 million dollar package, effective immediately, is being provided to social sector services and community groups to ensure they can continue to provide essential support to communities as we stay at home as a nation to stop the spread of COVID-19, Minister for Social Development Carmel Sepuloni announced. “At ...
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    6 days ago
  • Statement on guilty plea of March 15 terrorist
    “The guilty plea today will provide some relief to the many people whose lives were shattered by what happened on March 15,” Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said. “These guilty pleas and conviction bring accountability for what happened and also save the families who lost loved ones, those who were injured, ...
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    6 days ago
  • COVID-19 updates
    The Prime Minister is holding daily press conferences to update New Zealanders on the Government's response to COVID-19. Links to videos and transcripts of these updates below. These transcripts also include All of Government press conferences led by Director Ministry of Health's Director-General of Health Dr Ashley Bloomfield. 25 March: Live update from the Prime ...
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    6 days ago
  • Police numbers break through 10,000 mark
    Frontline Police numbers have broken through the 10,000 mark for the first time in history as officers step forward to keep the community safe during the COVID19 lockdown. “Two Police graduations in Auckland and Wellington in the past week have been conducted in unprecedented circumstances,” Police Minister Stuart Nash said. ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    6 days ago
  • Urgent tax measures for economic recovery
    Urgent legislation has been passed to support the package of economic and social measures needed to recover from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak. “The COVID-19 Response (Taxation and Social Assistance Urgent Measures) Bill will cushion New Zealanders from the worst economic impacts of the COVID-19 outbreak,” said Revenue Minister ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Further support for farmers and growers as drought persists
    From tomorrow, Government support for farmers and growers affected by drought will be expanded and extended across the country, with access to Rural Assistance Payments (RAPS) available throughout the North Island, parts of the South Island and the Chatham Islands, Social Development Minister Carmel Sepuloni announced. “These challenging conditions have ...
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    7 days ago
  • COVID-19: Temporary changes to Education Act
    Parliament has passed amendments to legislation that give the Secretary of Education stronger powers to act in the fight to limit the spread of COVID-19, Education Minister Chris Hipkins said today. “They are part of a suite of changes passed under the COVID-19 Response (Urgent Management Measures) Legislation Bill,” Chris ...
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    7 days ago
  • Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar join NZ and Singapore in committing to keeping supply a...
    Canada, Australia, Chile, Brunei and Myanmar have joined forces with New Zealand and Singapore by committing to keep supply chains open and remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis.  Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker today welcomed ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • COVID-19: Rent increase freeze and more protection for tenants
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Working together to protect businesses and workers
    As New Zealand unites to lock-down in the fight against COVID-19, the Finance Minister is urging all businesses and workers to stay connected over the next four weeks. “We understand the extreme pressure many businesses are under right now. I know most business owners think of their workers as family ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • State of National Emergency declared to fight COVID-19
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Prime Minister’s statement on State of National Emergency and Epidemic Notice
    Mr Speaker I wish to make a Ministerial Statement under Standing Order 347 in relation to the recent declaration of a State of National Emergency. Having considered the advice of the Director Civil Defence Emergency Management, the Minister of Civil Defence declared a State of National Emergency for the whole of ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    7 days ago
  • Deadline for domestic travel extended
    People needing to travel on domestic flights, trains and Cook Strait ferries to get home before the country moves into level 4 lock-down tomorrow night will be able to continue using the passenger services until midnight on Friday, Transport Minister Phil Twyford said today. Domestic passenger services, particularly ferries, have ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Mortgage holiday and business finance support schemes to cushion COVID impacts
    The Government, retail banks and the Reserve Bank are today announcing a major financial support package for home owners and businesses affected by the economic impacts of COVID-19. The package will include a six month principal and interest payment holiday for mortgage holders and SME customers whose incomes have been ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government working to keep air freight moving
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand moves to COVID-19 Alert Level 3, then Level 4 in 48 hours
    New Zealand moved up to COVID-19 Alert Level 3 – Restrict New Zealand to move up to COVID-19 Alert Level 4 – Eliminate, in 48 hours Two-staged approach to give people and businesses time to prepare  Level 3, from tomorrow Non-essential businesses must close All events and gatherings must be ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Prime Minister: COVID-19 Alert Level increased
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt takes significant economic decisions as NZ readies for Alert Level 4 in COVID-19 fight
    The Government is announcing significant further support for the economy, workers and businesses as the country unites to prepare for Alert Level 4 in the fight against COVID-19. Cabinet today agreed to remove the cap on the Government’s wage subsidy scheme, which will inject a further $4 billion into the ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Govt backs RBNZ move to support economy with lower interest rates
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Government statement on commercial cooperation during COVID-19
    The Government has asked the Commerce Commission to take account of the exceptional circumstances created by COVID-19 when monitoring business behaviour in coming weeks.   “The purpose of my request to the Commerce Commission is to make sure businesses can work together in ways that will allow them to provide ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • New Zealand temporarily closes diplomatic posts in Barbados and Myanmar due to COVID-19
    The New Zealand Government has temporarily closed its High Commission in Bridgetown, Barbados and its Embassy in Yangon, Myanmar due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Foreign Minister Winston Peters says.   “Due to the increasing scarcity of air links in and out of Bridgetown and Yangon, and the pressure COVID-19 is placing ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Supporting Māori communities and businesses through
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    1 week ago
  • Guidelines for hospitality establishments released
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Nation steps up to COVID-19 Alert Level 2
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • PM Address – Covid-19 Update
    Kia ora koutou katoa I’m speaking directly to all New Zealanders today to give you as much certainty and clarity as we can as we fight Covid-19. Over the past few weeks, the world has changed. And it has changed very quickly. In February it would have seemed unimaginable to ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • NZ and Singapore commit to keeping supply and trade links open, including on essential goods and med...
    New Zealand and Singapore have jointly committed to keep supply chains open and to remove any existing trade restrictive measures on essential goods, especially medical supplies, in the face of the Covid-19 crisis. Trade and Export Growth Minister David Parker welcomed the commitment. “This is an important collective response, and ...
    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago
  • Joint Ministerial Statement by Singapore and New Zealand -Covid-19 situation
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    BeehiveBy beehive.govt.nz
    2 weeks ago