3 Aug 2011

MPs vote to support ban on synthetic cannabis goods

6:46 am on 3 August 2011

Synthetic drugs such as Kronic could be off the shelves as early as next week after Parliament voted overwhelming in favour of last-minute changes to drug legislation.

MPs were debating the committee stages of the Misuse of Drugs Amendment Bill on Tuesday.

Associate Minister of Health Peter Dunne introduced last-minute changes to the bill that will take 43 synthetic cannabis products off the market for the next 12 months.

Mr Dunne says the temporary ban will allow the Government to work on a more permanent solution to the harmful substances.

ACT MP Heather Roy tried unsuccessfully to stop the ban of synthetic products by proposing an age restriction on their use.

While the Labour Party supports the bill, Labour MP Iain Lees-Galloway says the changes to the bill are just a stop-gap measure and the Government could have acted sooner.

He says the synthetic products should be properly tested before they are put on the market.

Mr Dunne says anyone caught with more than 37-packets of a banned substance such as Kronic could be charged with possession for supply.

He hopes the bill will have its third and final reading on Thursday.