Latest data from the Ministry of Health shows that past 12 month use of cannabis has remained at just 14.9%.
In contrast, 4 in 5 adults drank alcohol in past year.
The law is a deterrent – and the coercion of the law ensures referral to health services.
Unfortunately Maori are more than twice as likely to use cannabis than non-Maori.
The solution is not to normalise drug use. The solution is to find out why Maori are more prone to drug use, and deal with the underlying issues.
The data also shows that young people are most at risk – and legalising it would simply add to the normalisation, availability, health harms and targeting towards this subgroup.