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In 2020, the citizens of New Zealand participated in a vote to determine the legalization of cannabis for recreational purposes.
The 2020 cannabis referendum saw a close outcome. With 50.7% of New Zealand voters opposing the proposed legislation for the legalization of recreational cannabis. While 48.4% were in favor. Approximately 0.9% of votes were either unclear or incomplete. As a result, recreational cannabis remains illegal, although The Misuse of Drugs Act emphasizes the use of discretion in deciding whether to press charges, adopting a health-centered approach. It’s important to note that medicinal cannabis remains legal.
Leading up to the 2020 referendum, our Office compiled essential information outlining potential impacts associated with the legalization of cannabis. This information was curated with input from a diverse panel of experts and clinicians. You can find our comprehensive summary below.
LEGALIZING CANNABIS IN NEW ZEALAND: THE FULL EVIDENCE
To assist voters in preparation for the 2020 referendum on recreational cannabis, we compiled essential information outlining potential impacts associated with the legalization of cannabis.
Despite the referendum’s conclusion, narrowly failing to pass, our summary and pertinent resources are still available for your perusal below.
It’s crucial to note that our focus in this information centers on the implications of legalizing recreational cannabis use, distinct from the regulations governing medicinal cannabis, which has its own set of laws.
Public perceptions regarding the goodness or harm, safety or risks of cannabis vary widely, often shaped by pre-existing beliefs. The subject is intricate and encompasses various aspects. Our objective is to provide impartial information from credible sources, covering a broad spectrum of areas influenced by cannabis, including health and social impacts.
This initiative drew insights from a diverse panel of researchers and clinicians. Each contributor brought forth information and expertise, referencing research both locally and internationally to collectively assess the available information. Acknowledging the complexity of the topic and the existing gaps in research and scientific data, our conclusions are not universally agreed upon, but efforts were made to reach a consensus on as many aspects as possible.