New Zealand to hold cannabis referendum in 2020


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“I am fairly cynical that you have a authorities right here that desires to distract from the core problems with a common election,” Bridges mentioned.

New Zealand will hold a binding referendum on cannabis legalisation.

New Zealand will maintain a binding referendum on hashish legalisation.Credit score:Rohan Thomson

He suspected two different mentioned referendums would even be included on euthanasia and electoral reform, though Little has talked down these prospects.

Bridges can be voting towards hashish legalisation and mentioned he hadn’t smoked marijuana at any level in his life.

Little mentioned he wouldn’t be utilizing a mooted “residents meeting” for coverage growth, one thing the Inexperienced Social gathering had pushed for.

The Inexperienced Social gathering negotiated the referendum throughout ‘confidence and provide’ talks to kind the federal government.


That settlement stipulated the referendum must occur at or earlier than the overall election.

It is understood a Cupboard paper has been circulating on the difficulty for the previous couple of months of 2018, with some points nonetheless to be ironed out.

The Greens favoured passing a regulation to legalise marijuana previous to the precise vote, that will solely be triggered if the referendum prompt that ought to occur.

That approach a future authorities – presumably one the Greens will not be a part of – couldn’t stretch out the timeframe for truly legalising hashish. It will additionally imply the general public might have a really clear thought of what a “sure” vote would imply in apply – in contrast to the state of affairs growing after the UK’s 2016 Brexit referendum.

Latest polling on the difficulty counsel the referendum will see the decriminalisation of marijuana.

An August 2017 Curia ballot discovered 65 per cent of the nation supported legalising or decriminalising marijuana for private possession.

An enormous 81 per cent supported decriminalising it for medicinal use – one thing the federal government have already moved on.

Inexperienced Social gathering drug reform spokeswoman Chloe Swarbrick mentioned the get together was “stoked” with the information and inspired Kiwis to vote “three ticks Inexperienced” in 2020.


“We have been working with Minister Andrew Little for the final yr on the design and strategy of this referendum,” Swarbrick mentioned.

“The truth that it has been introduced as binding and on the common election is improbable information for evidence-based hurt discount coverage in Aotearoa New Zealand.

“Unlawful substances are precisely the other of managed substances. Hashish must be regulated.”

Swarbrick mentioned New Zealand ought to take a look at finest apply from all over the world.

“We do not have the re-invent the wheel right here, as a result of we’ve the chance to take a look at best-practise frameworks all over the world that minimise hurt,” Swarbrick mentioned.

“We wish to keep away from a scheme that repeats the issues we’ve with the alcohol trade or with company prescribed drugs. Any mannequin that prioritises revenue – whether or not within the black market or by large enterprise – usually places folks and security second. We wish neighborhood management and regulation that reduces hurt.”

Justice Minister Andrew Little announced the referendum.

Justice Minister Andrew Little introduced the referendum.Credit score:Bloomberg

ACT chief David Seymour welcomed the information.

“The overriding intention of our drug coverage must be to stop hurt to kids. This isn’t being achieved by the regime we’ve in place now,” Seymour mentioned.

“As we debate the deserves of legalising hashish, we must always to look to jurisdictions in Canada, California and Colorado who’ve put in place extra enlightened drug coverage.

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