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National Drug Policy
Illegal and Other Drugs
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National Drug Policy New Zealand
National Drug Policy 2007-2012
This page introduces the National Drug Policy. You can also
download or view the National Drug Policy online
In New Zealand the National Drug Policy is the guiding document for policy and practices aimed at minimising drug-related harm in the community.
The National Drug Policy 2007-2012 builds on the
first National Drug Policy 1998-2003
. It sets out the Government's policy for tobacco, alcohol, illegal and other drugs within a single framework. It does this by establishing the goal, objectives and principles that will guide drug policy and intersectoral decision-making about the best way to address the harms caused by drug use, and identifies the population groups that require special attention.
Goal of the National Drug Policy
The overarching goal of the National Drug Policy is to prevent and reduce the health, social and economic harms that are linked to tobacco, alcohol, illegal and other drug use. It does this through a balance of measures that:
control or limit the availability of drugs (supply control)
limit the use of drugs by individuals, including abstinence (demand reduction)
reduce harm from existing drug use (problem limitation).
The following objectives have been identified for the National Drug Policy to achieve the overarching goal:
to prevent or delay the uptake of tobacco, alcohol, illegal and other drug use, particularly in Maori, Pacific peoples and young people
to reduce the harm caused by tobacco by reducing the prevalence of tobacco smoking, consumption of tobacco products and exposure to second-hand smoke
to reduce harm to individuals, families and communities from the risky consumption of alcohol
to prevent or reduce the supply and use of illegal drugs and other harmful drug use
to make families and communities safer by reducing the irresponsible and unlawful use of drugs
to reduce the cost of drug misuse to individuals, society and government.
Drug policy in New zealand is based on the principle of harm minimisation. The aim of harm minimisation is to improve social, economic and health outcomes for the individual, the commmunity and the population at large.
Strategies that support harm minimisation can be divided into three groups or 'pillars':
Supply control - which aims to prevent or reduce harm by restricting the availability of drugs.
Demand reduction - which involves a wide range of activities that aim to reduce individuals' desire to use drugs
Problem limitation - which seeks to reduce harm from drug use that is already occuring.
View the flowchart that better describes these principles (Excel, 18 KB)
Page last updated 22 April 2010
Minister of Health