NZ’s ‘Vote NO’ Campaign Is a NZ-Funded Effort

By June 30, 2020 Media, Media Release
Campaign Is a NZ-Funded Effort

Media Release 30 June 2020
New Zealand’s Vote No campaign is rubbishing claims that the Vote NO campaign is being bankrolled by or controlled by US organisations.

“An alliance of community organisations and leaders (including ex-addicts, educators, ex-police, addiction counsellors, health professionals and community workers) have joined together to form Smart Approaches To Marijuana NZ (SAM-NZ), and will work together to oppose any attempt to legalise cannabis in New Zealand in the upcoming referendum. We’re pleased to have such a wide-ranging group of organisations and experts from all areas of society to come together to argue against legalising the recreational use of cannabis, based on reputable science and sound principles of public health and safety,” says spokesperson Aaron Ironside.

“Yes, the coalition is drawing on research and resources from prominent US group SAM which is led by Dr Kevin Sabet, a former advisor to three U.S. presidential administrations (Clinton, Bush and Obama Administrations) – the only drug policy staffer to have ever served as a political appointee in a Democrat and Republican administration.”

“SAM’s Staff and Science Advisory Board is composed of world-recognised experts in research, addiction, and treatment who work tirelessly to advance public health and safety, and stand up to a powerful marijuana industry.”

“However, we reiterate that SAM in the US are not telling our coalition how to run our campaign, and have not contributed one cent to it.”

“What we are doing is drawing on the expertise and experience of a group that has watched the outcomes of legalisation in many US states. This is no different to groups like the Drug Foundation inviting people like Deborah Small, executive director of Break the Chains (USA), and US activist & author asha bandele (shown right) – both who attended a symposium attended by Andrew Little and Chlose Swarbrick in the Parliament buildings.”


(Smart Approaches To Marijuana NZ) 

Aaron Ironside                        Spokesperson: SAM-NZ

Pat Buckley                             Amped4Life Trust

Shk Shaakir Ismail                   New Zealand Muslim Association

Pat Walsh                                Secondary School Principal, former head of a Principal’s Ass’n
Rev Pane Kawhia                     Anglican Minister, Ruatoria

Christine Rankin                      Transforming Justice Foundation

Dr Ate  Moala                          PACYFIC Trust

Vic Tamati                               Community Worker

Mo McLeary                            Drug Free Ambassadors

Dr Andreas Leinfellner            Paediatrician.

Kirk Hardy                               The Drug Detection Agency

Alli Axford                               Drug Free World

Mazin  Al-Salim                       Working Together Group (WTG)

Sully Pa’ea                               Community Worker – South Auckland

Maureen MacDonald              Drug-ARM Wellington

Wayne Mulqueen                   Focus on the Family NZ

Jess McVicar                           Sensible Sentencing Trust

Dave Pizzini                             Ex-Police (Detective Senior Sergeant)

Bob McCoskrie                        Family First NZ

Darryl Wesley                         Health Professional

Stuart Caldwell                       Get Smart (Tauranga)

Brendon Warne                      Anti-P Ministries

Alan Vink                                 LeadershipWorx

Dale Kirk                                  Methcon

Stuart Lange                          NZ Christian Network

Nick Tuitasi QSM                     Pacific Wave

John Subritzky                         Promise Keepers

Rob Nordstrom                       Rubicon Alcohol & Other Drug

Gaylene Fraser                        Drug Free World

Karrin  Coates                         Sensible Sentencing Group Trust

Greer Keane                            Te Ata Rangi Rangatahi

Glenn   Dobson                        International Board Member – National Drug and Alcohol

Screening Association (NDASA)

Gayann Phillips                       NZ Christian Network

Christina Stroud                      World Federation Against Drugs

Ismail  Waja                            Working Together Group (WTG)

Bruce Couper                          Ex-Police

Phil Paikea                              Community Worker

Trevor Turner                         Drug Free World

Imraan Ali                               New Zealand Muslim Association

Ronji Tanielu                           Community Worker

Allan Va’a                                Community Worker – South Auckland

Bev Adair-Beets                      Youth Advocate

Piripi Rakete                            Drug Free World

Dr Kevin Sabet                         SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana)

Luke Niforatos                        SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana)