NZ Doctors Oppose Raising Minimum Legal Drinking Age

The New Zealand Medical Association (NZMA) opposes raising the minimum legal drinking age from 18 to 20. It says there is no clinical evidence in support of the change and raising the age would penalize the majority of responsible 18 and 19-year olds for the actions of a minority.

Many members of the medical group also argue that it would be hypocritical to raise the drinking age to 20 when young people can join the military, get married and vote at age 18.

Dr. Ross Boswell, head of the NZMA told legislators that the problem could more effectively be solved by enforcing existing laws. He pointed to recent police stings in which up to a third of the alcohol retailers were not even asking young people for ID.



  • Fleming, Grant. Keep drinking age at 18, say doctors. New Zealand Herald, May 3, 2006.

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