Helen Kelly is the next to call out Peter Dunne’s bullshit

It is a red-letter day when Helen Kelly and I are on the same side.

Former CTU head Helen Kelly has labelled Associate Health Minister Peter Dunne’s speech on drug reform “dishonest”.

Her battle to access medicinal cannabis for her terminal lung cancer has unfolded publicly.

She’s currently taking cannabis products she sources illegally to relieve her pain.

Ms Kelly says the product she took last night made her violently ill, and she and other sufferers need a product that’s specialist-approved.

“I’m dying, and it’s considered not good enough for me because somehow it’s going to harm me, it’s ludicrous.”   

Mr Dunne this morning told a special session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York that New Zealand urged the pharmaceutical industry to invest more in research and development of cannabis-based products.

He said for those with a terminal illness, a compassionate approach to their treatment is a priority.

However he said finding the right medicinal cannabis product required a robust, scientific approach.

Ms Kelly said she found the speech “unbelievable” because Mr Dunne was saying everything she wanted to hear, but the situation he described in New Zealand was far from reality.

“He uses these words, available, compassionate, and it’s just simply not.

“I now no longer have an application in for cannabis because it’s too difficult to get it through the system and there isn’t any cannabis available in New Zealand that I can take lawfully, so I’m taking it unlawfully.”

Peter Dunne moved with amazing alacrity on synthetic cannabis, but seems to be really dragging the chain on natural cannabis.

We should be moving rather rapidly towards a regime not dissimilar to the way tobacco and alcohol are managed.

It is going to happen and it will happen a whole lot faster without pontificating ponces like Peter Dunne getting in the way.


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As much at home writing editorials as being the subject of them, Cam has won awards, including the Canon Media Award for his work on the Len Brown/Bevan Chuang story. When he’s not creating the news, he tends to be in it, with protagonists using the courts, media and social media to deliver financial as well as death threats.

They say that news is something that someone, somewhere, wants kept quiet. Cam Slater doesn’t do quiet and, as a result, he is a polarising, controversial but highly effective journalist who takes no prisoners.

He is fearless in his pursuit of a story.

Love him or loathe him, you can’t ignore him.