March for medicinal cannabis in Auckland

  • 22/04/2017
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Nothing is likely to change as long as Bill English is Prime Minister (file)

Supporters of medical cannabis are marching down Auckland's Queen St today, urging the Government to help create easier access for patients.

The rally and march is being run by Auckland Patients' Group, which includes patients and advocates from across the city.

Chris Fowlie from the National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws says the drug's too expensive, and too difficult to access.

"It's still really, really difficult, impossible for most people. The conditions you have to have, you have to be really severe and terminal - who wants to go through all that?"

He says police are conducting raids on medical marijuana patients.

"They're not turning a blind eye, which is this myth that police and politicians put out there."

Speaking to The AM Show earlier this month, Prime Minister Bill English said there's already a "compassionate" and legal route for patients to get cannabis products - if they need them.

But Mr Fowlie says it's a con.

"What this Government is trying to make out is that they have this compassionate approach and patients can go through this process and obtain it," says Mr Fowlie.

"But the reality is that over all this time, nothing really of any significance has actually changed."

And nothing is likely to change as long as Mr English is Prime Minister.

"We don't want an official marijuana industry," he told The AM Show. "We're not going to be legalising it."

Green Party health spokeswoman Julie Anne Genter will be one of several speakers at the event, which begins at 1pm in Aotea Square.

It will be followed by the March for Science at 1:30pm.