Christchurch based Civic Issues think tank, The MildGreen Initiatives
has been at the forefront of "Healthy Christchurch" alcohol and other drug policy for more than twenty years. In response to 'concerns' expressed at recent standing committee's looking at the provisions for 'management' of soft drugs in our community (Psychoactive Substances Act) MildGreen Policy Analyst Blair Anderson recommends the Christchurch City Council marginalises synthetic psychoactive availability and although mild by alcohol standards, the apparent risks and harms.
The MildGreens commend the embracing of purposeful social health primitives, ah la Ottawa Charter
, with an 'all drug policy' consistent with the city's signatory status, the core driver for Healthy Christchurch Charter and also consistent with Ministry of Health (circa 1994-6) National Drug Policy principles.
|Pick Up The Pieces|
One of the many coffee shops in Amsterdam
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Such principles applied across the board, [including evidence for alcohol harm reduction] can be achieved by reenabling and adopting NZ's world class "Restricted Substances Regulations" a concept promoted by fmr Deputy Prime Minister and Assoc Minister of Health, Hon Jim Anderton
as gazetted into law in 2008. Many would recognise this initiative as the required crucial adjustment
to the principle 1975 Misuse Of Drugs Act as Fmr Prime Minister, now #3 at the UN, Rt. Hon. Helen Clarke's R18 partial prohibition of Cannabis.
|Brill tram No 178 on the Christchurch Tramway|
Why do it in Christchurch?
Our gold standard health and development study
evidences that four out of five citizens of our city under 35yrs like Cannabis, enough to break the law in accessing and consuming it more than five times. All of whom seemingly having come to little harm.
We have to resolve those tensions that would see such a targeted and punitive law (disproportionate in its ageist, sexist and racial application) getting in the way of best practice.
The science and evidence for such reform is no longer moot. The evidence is in and it is exonerative. Anything else will continue to waste time, resource and energy away from what needs to be done, as is the case here.
Fix that which is broken. Once.