In Oceania, drug production, trafficking and consumption remain overwhelmingly a criminal justice issue. However, Australia and New Zealand have moved towards policies that prioritise health to respond to drug use. More recently, New Zealand made the headlines with the adoption of an innovative policy towards new psychoactive substances.
Whilst St John Medical Director - Tony Smith, thinks it wouldn't make sense to extend Naloxone training to those beyond a medical setting, Charles Henderson of the New Zealand Needle Exchange Programme believes Heroin use is on the rise.
The aim of the conference is to broaden the understanding of the range of addictions, comorbidity, pain management, harm reduction, mental health and wellbeing and to look at solutions in regard to prevention, treatment and recovery through evidence based research, programs and practical models.
The HNZ apologised to the thousands of people it evicted, and said it was “dismayed at the scale of the human impact of the zero-tolerance policy” and was working to be a more compassionate organisation.