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Mallard the Ass Versus Harold the Giraffe

Mallard the Ass Versus Harold the Giraffe

Education Minister Trevor Mallard's call for schools to boycott the immensely popular and successful Life Education Trust is juvenile and pathetic, ACT New Zealand Health Spokesman Heather Roy said today.

"Ask any kid about Harold the Giraffe - Life Education Trust's mascot - and you'll find the giraffe is a far better role model than Trevor Mallard ever will be. The Trust reaches 250,000 children every year - it does an exceptional job.

"Mallard complains that the Life Education Trust accepted a donation from a tobacco company. So what? What on earth is the matter with that?

"Mallard is actually using the tobacco donation as an excuse to attack a successful organisation with a different ideology from his. Life Education Trust believes in prevention - it works on the principle that educating children early about the dangers of harmful substances and actions will prevent future problems. Mallard believes in harm minimalisation rather than prevention. It's ridiculous that such a senior minister can't recognise that we need both strategies to work side-by-side.

"Of course, this control-freak Government's other problem with the Trust is that it is so very successful and operates completely independently, without a cent of Government funding.

"The Education Minister isn't even fighting fair. He calls the tobacco donation the Trust received "sponsorship" to imply there were strings attached. It is not inappropriate that such a company should contribute toward prevention of smoking in children.

"Mallard simply doesn't have a hope of winning a battle against Harold the Giraffe. The politician has bitten off more than he can chew," Mrs Roy said.

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