Tougher Drug Law Welcomed

Making distributors and producers of party pills responsible for proving their products are safe is necessary to protect the public from dangerous side effects, says Dr Paul Ockelford, Chair of the New Zealand Medical Association.

“The NZMA welcomes the announcement of the introduction of the Psychoactive Substances Bill by Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne,” said Dr Ockelford.

“We need legislation with a far more stringent set of rules to protect the public from the dangerous side-effects of party pills and other synthetic drugs sold as legal highs.

“Those who sell these drugs currently have no obligation to prove they are safe. Unregulated drugs could be sold until they were proven dangerous, rather than assessing their risk before they were made available for sale to the public.”

Dr Ockelford commended Mr Dunne for the commitment and effort he has put into strengthening drug legislation, which had led to more of these products being banned.