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New Zealand Health Committee Hears Medical Marijuana Testimony

By on September 4, 2013
New Zealand's outdated ban on medical marijuana has sparked outcry from patients

New Zealand’s outdated ban on medical marijuana has sparked outcry from many patients – New Zealand regulators are taking another look at the country’s medical marijuana laws, according to a statement by the Aotearoa Legalise Cannabis Party (ALCP).

On Wednesday, independent researcher Geoff Noller, Ph.D presented evidence to the Parliament’s Health Select Committee on the potential benefits of marijuana – including data from an observational study.

Dr. Noller’s testimony came after patients submitted a petition to Parliament urging them to reconsider an earlier recommendation from the country’s Law Commission.

Last year, the government-funded Law Commission recommended that marijuana laws be reformed in order to begin clinical trials of raw cannabis. However, this proposal was ignored.

And while countries around the world have made progress towards providing patients with access to cannabis, laws in New Zealand are still being debated with little progress.

Julian Crawford, a spokesperson for ALCP, believes change needs to happen quickly.

“It is a matter of some urgency that patients with chronic or debilitating illnesses are able to access medical marijuana immediately.”

According to the Party’s release, low-level courts have supported the unofficial understanding that medical marijuana users with a doctor’s support will not be prosecuted for personal use.

But legislation has yet to clarify this, which prevents cannabis from being legally prescribed, researched or cultivated in the country.

The full press release is available online at

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