Wednesday March 21, 2018   Last updated 08:33AM

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Human rights sideline in drug policy

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National has pledged to get tough on methamphetamine as it looks for a formula to win reelection.

It wants to crack down on organised crime and drug dealers by giving police new power to search the cars and houses of gang members at any time to ensure they don’t have firearms.

Police spokesperson Paula Bennett says it will also cancel or refuse benefits to gang members if they can’t justify expensive assets.

As well as more enforcement, National will invest $20 million a year on drug treatment and education services including 1500 additional in-patient drug treatment places and community based treatment, prevention and education services provided by non-government organisations and iwi.

Canterbury University sociologist Jarrod Gilbert, who has written a history of gangs in New Zealand, says the policy is cynical, dangerous and won’t work.

He says Ms Bennett’s claim that some people have fewer rights than others is troubling.

A Newshub-Reid research poll released last night showed National dropping to 43.3 percent, its lowest rating in over ten years, with Labour now on 39.4 percent, some 15 percent up on four weeks ago.

New Zealand First and the Grerens had shed support, and the Maori Party was down to 1 percent, meaning even if it was able to win electorate seats it could not bring in a list MP.

Copyright © 2017, UMA Broadcasting Ltd:

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