Welcome to NORML NZ

NORML’s Position on ‘legal highs’ & the Psychoactive Substances Act

NORML supports the intention of the Psychoactive Substances Act It should be widened to cover all low-risk drugs including cannabis Legalising and regulating cannabis is the most effective way... Read more

Norml News online

Latest issue: Previous issues: Winter/Spring 2010 Autumn 2010 Summer 2010 Spring 2009 Winter 2009 Autumn 2009 Summer 2009 Spring 2008 Autumn 2008 Summer 2008 Winter 2007 Autumn 2007 Summer... Read more

Download archive

NORML’s download archive contains research reports, government papers, submissions, as well as NORML’s own forms, graphics and leaflets. NORML New Zealand (Inc.) forms, leaflet and graphics Guide: How to... Read more


NORML’s press releases are collated here. Media: please contact our spokespeople (Phil Saxby and Chris Fowlie) for comments or more information. Read more

How you can help

We are 400,000 strong and we will change the law! Here is how you can help: Don’t act alone. Form a local NORML support group – unity is strength.... Read more

Contesting a cannabis charge – what you need to know

Help yourself – not the law The most important thing is to know your rights and understand the law. If you’ve made the choice to use cannabis, you should... Read more

Drug Testing

NEW! NORML presents an impairment-measuring iPhone App! Dear NORML Friends, Walk or Drive is the new name for our CheckPlusBalance iPhone impairment-measuring app. We still help you decide whether or... Read more

Medicinal Cannabis

New Zealand patients need safe legal access to medicinal cannabis Download or read NORML’s leaflet about Medical Cannabis NZ Ministry of Health: How to apply for medicinal cannabis... Read more


Check out our section on medicinal cannabis. NORML is New Zealand’s oldest law reform organisation, and one of our three primary goals is to facilitate safe legal access for patients using cannabis medicinally. The medical campaign is best led by patients and health professionals – we will help with advice and support while being careful to not give our opponents any excuse for inaction. As Australia prepares to approve medicinal cannabis products, an important legal case has confirmed patients can bring a one-month supply from any country where it has been legally supplied. There are currently two petitions we recommend you sign to support medicinal cannabis in New Zealand:


Bongs, pipes and vaporisers reduce harm from smoking, but have been banned for sale in New Zealand since 1999. Submissions are open now on a proposed law change. A new NZ Ministry of Health discussion document proposes amending current laws and regulations to reduce the impact of criminality and to control the availability of drug utensils including cannabis bongs, pipes and vaporisers. Have your say here, by Tuesday 20 September 2016.


Courts, police, prosecutors, the media and the general public often have highly unrealistic views of cannabis, which means cannabis growers are often charged (and convicted) for excessive amounts and inflated values. Now you can help. NORML has teamed up with Massey University for this anonymous online survey. It takes 15-30 minutes and may help restore some sanity to our courts.



Safer.org.nz is a platform to allow New Zealanders who support cannabis law reform to easily and quickly email their MP, any other MP or all MPs! Help end cannabis prohibition in New Zealand: go to Safer.org.nz now!

legalise cannabis

Go to Safer.org.nz to help legalise cannabis


NORML supports the intention of the Psychoactive Substances Act to regulate the controlled availability of low-risk drugs, but it should be widened to include cannabis. Allowing natural cannabis is the most effective way of closing down the market for more risky synthetic substitutes. [Read more][Sign our petition]


Support for cannabis law reform continues to increase. 12 April 2016 – TVNZ poll shows “the majority of New Zealanders are now in favour of the use of medical marijuana.” 31st March 2016 – URM poll in response to Helen Kelly’s unsuccessful application to use medicinal cannabis showed 72% “support the use of marijuana for medical purposes” with only 13% opposed. A TVNZ poll in May 2015 showed an increase in support for medicinal cannabis, with only 21% of respondents supporting the current law. A Herald poll from June 2014 shows most people want cannabis made legal or decriminalised – including 45% of National Party voters. A follow up poll two months later found “almost 80 per cent of those polled wanted cannabis to be at least partially legalised.” A previous Campbell Live poll of viewers found 84% wanted to end cannabis prohibition.

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Cannabis is the third most popular recreational drug in New Zealand (behind only alcohol and tobacco), and has been used by nearly 2 million Kiwis. According to government surveys, around 540,000 New Zealanders smoke pot regularly, while 70,000 light up every day despite harsh laws against its use. Our public policies should reflect this reality, not deny it. NORML’s mission is to move public opinion sufficiently to legalise the responsible use of cannabis by adults, and to serve as an advocate for consumers to assure they have access to high quality cannabis that is safe, convenient and affordable.


Join our campaign

NORML has adopted three campaign themes that have widespread support:

  • Cannabis should be a Health Issue, not a Crime!
    (focus resources on problematic abuse. Let the police focus on crime that matters)
  • Allow Safe Legal Access to Medicine
    (access to medicinal cannabis, similar to 18 states in the USA, Israel, Netherlands, Germany, Spain, Canada etc)
  • A Regulated, Taxable Market for Low-Risk Drugs Such As Cannabis
    (access to low-risk drugs like cannabis should be regulated via an adults-only, taxable market similar to that in the Netherlands, or the way alcohol is regulated here)

There are too many smokers to arrest. It’s time to stop this racist,discriminatory “War on Drugs”. It’s time:–

  • for cannabis to be allowed as safe, legal medicine
  • for a regulated, adults-only, taxable market for low risk drugs, including cannabis.

The so-called “War on Drugs” is really a war on people. It divides communities and families. For 40 years, politicians have exploited this war as a vote-getter, but who are they kidding?

  • New Zealand now has the highest arrest rate in the world for cannabis “crimes”, yet despite this,
  • New Zealand now has, along with Australia, the highest teenage cannabis use rate in the world!

The “War on Drugs” has caused the deaths of many innocent people in NZ and elsewhere. The cost is huge – it is estimated the American taxpayer has paid one trillion dollars to fight this war. To what good effect? Stop the “War on Drugs” now!

It’s a Health Issue, Not a Crime

Ten years ago (in 2000) Portugal decriminalised all personal drug use. Drug deaths in  Portugal went down 27%, the feared “drug tourism” did not happen, and teenage drug use has actually decreased. The new policy now has general support across all political parties.

  • Drug users are not treated as criminals
  • Those with drug problems receive treatment, not jail terms!

Why not New Zealand?

Medicinal Access

The New Zealand Law Commission says clinical trials should begin and Police should leave medicinal users of cannabis alone… Natural cannabis (plant material) is now officially accepted as a medicine by 18 of the states in the USA as well as many other countries including Canada, Israel, Germany and the Netherlands.

Why not New Zealand?

Prohibition: a Failed Experiment

In 2010, Californians almost voted for a regulated, adults-only, taxable market.  In 2012 that became a reality for Colorado and Washington, both of which legalised and regulated cannabis in a similar way to alcohol. The NZ Law Commission says prohibition should be a “last resort”… Prohibition is an expensive, failed, policy experiment whose burden falls mostly on the young, the poor and Maori.

Why not change?

Help us end prohibition now!

NORML stall

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National Organisation for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, New Zealand Inc. (1980)