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Families Join Forces on Drugged Driving

The Dow family today welcomed the support of the Porteous and Keene families in their campaign for the introduction of roadside drug testing in New Zealand as occurs in Australia, the UK and Canada.

“Our family has been devastated by the loss of our Dad, Ian Porteous, Mum Rosalie Porteous, Aunt Ora Keene and their friend Brenda Williams in the horrific Waverley Crash last June caused by a driver high on cannabis and synthetics. We are determined to do all we can to prevent another family losing loved ones and want the issue of drug impaired driving to be taken seriously. It is unacceptable that Ministers have been sitting on proposals from officials for roadside testing for nearly 18 months when more than 70 lives a year are lost to drugged drivers. We considered initiating our own petition or campaign but after reading of Matthew’s Petition decided it was better to join forces with the Dow family. We will be promoting the petition but also appearing with them before Select Committee to push home the message that this issue cannot be ignored.” Logan Porteous said.

“We cannot bring back our mum, Ora, but we are determined to prevent further tragedies of this sort. Roadside drug testing is a no-brainer and Government just needs to get on with it.” Says Murray Keene

“I am so pleased the Porteous family contacted me over the weekend offering support after the disappointment at Parliament last week. We were not able to present the petition last week as a consequence of Nelson MP Nick Smith being suspended from Parliament. We have been inundated with support and have decided to re-open the petition with the support of the Porteous and Keene families. Every family runs the risk of losing a loved one to a drug impaired driver as has occurred to us and we want New Zealanders to join our cause by adding their signature,” Karen Dow said.

“My frustration is that Police Minister Stuart Nash dismissed our petition last December saying a discussion document had been approved by Cabinet and that the issue would be resolved by May when it closed. The AA and councils declined to support the petition based on the Minister’s assurances of progress. Mr Nash should be held to account for his false statement that cabinet had approved the Discussion Document, particularly as it discouraged people from supporting my petition. I welcome the opportunity now we know Mr Nash was bluffing, and that Ministers have been dily-dallying for over a year, for the public to show their support by adding their signature.”

The Dow, Porteous and Keene families are today at Parliament to promote the petition and to meet as many MP’s, parties and Ministers to push for the introduction of roadside drug testing.

The Petition can be found at: https://www.parliament.nz/en/pb/petitions/document/PET_82698/petition-of-karen-dow-matthews-petition-seeking-urgent


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