MP Mike Sabin is being investigated by the police for assault, and it appears that National are looking at possible replacements for him in his Northland electorate.
Sabin has a history of involvement in drug enforcement and education.
Before becoming an MP in 2011 Sabin was a police officer for ten years (including drugs detective) and then in 2006 founded a business called Methcon that somehow made money out of addressing the P problem. They described themselves as:
New Zealand’s only specialist methamphetamine education provider
Sabin’s website profile goes into more detail.
Mike took leave without pay from the police in 2006 having founded a world-first company,MethCon Group Ltd, the aim of which was to provide employers, government agencies, community organisations and members of the public with better education, policy and strategies to respond to New Zealand’s growing P problem. Mike delivered hundreds of seminars and presentations in businesses, schools and communities from Te Kao in the North to Wellsford in the South, gaining a respected public profile and connectivity with communities and organisations around the North.
Mike quickly rose to national prominence as managing director of Methcon Group with frequent media appearances and commentaries. The business quickly expanded from Northland right across the country with Methcon Group gaining recognition with a number of business awards, while Mike himself was recognised with national leadership awards for his commitment in this area.
While researching solutions to New Zealand’s methamphetamine crisis Mike traveled extensively into the United States and Europe and provided research and recommendations to the previous government and the new National lead government, which have given this issue considerable priority.
Mike’s is now considered one of the country’s foremost authorities on matters related to methamphetamine and drug policy which is also reflected internationally in his roles on several international drug prevention policy organisations, including being one of two representatives for Oceania on the World Federation Against Drugs. Mike also attended and gave an address at the United Nations in Vienna at the 10 year anniversary of global drug policy in 2009.
Coincidentally I watched a documentary last night on methamphetamine in Fresno, California. The widespread inter-generational addiction problems are awful. And the prospects for kicking the habit don’t look great.
A comment here yesterday from “Concerned Citizen”:
This Sabin idiot gave us the most ridiculous speech about drug addicts one day. He said it was proven that forcing them into rehab was the only way to get results. Hello!! Anyone who has had anything to do with an addict would know that forcing them to do anything won’t work. They have to want to get better. Ruling people with a big stick hasn’t got you anywhere much now, has it Mike?
In a Radio NZ interview in 2008:
Mike Sabin: There are programmes. The effectiveness of them, and the ability to actually have a mandated programme. So in words what we’re talking about is this notion of you only get off drugs if you want to is actually quite incorrect.
With some of the more powerful drugs if you force them into a corner and you give them a hard option or a really hard option they will take the hard option.
And some of the results we’re seeing in the United States with drug treatment courts. You know forty to sixty percent of people are getting clean within three months. Recidivism rates dropped from sixty percent down as low as five percent.
That may not be his current thinking on cessation methods.
Reported in Australia in June this year:
Australia urgently needs to step up research into treatments for ice addiction, health and drug experts say.
Unlike methadone for opioid users, a substitute for methamphetamines largely does not exist.
The Australian Medical Association has told a Victorian inquiry into the supply and use of ice that urgent research is needed to develop suitable treatment and management options for methamphetamine dependence.
Clinical drug experts have joined the call, saying Australia could be leading the way in looking for more effective long-term treatment for people using crystal methamphetamine.
The head of clinical services at Turning Point Drug and Alcohol Services, Dr Matthew Frei, said pharmaceutical treatments for ice were undeveloped and there were limited options for long term therapy.
And Sabin in Australia about the same time:
PREVENTION has to be the cornerstone of any strategy to arrest Victoria’s ice scourge, an international expert says.
Mike Sabin, a former New Zealand Police detective who has become an internationally recognised expert on methamphetamine, said prevention was often the “poor cousin” in drugs strategies, after treatment and enforcement.
“Don’t ever think you can arrest your way out of this problem,” Mr Sabin said.
Mr Sabin said strategies aimed at tackling health issues like heart disease, skin cancer and obesity focused on prevention and ice use should be treated in a similar way.
“It’s an entirely preventable health problem,” Mr Sabin said.
“The key to tackling this problem and every other drug problem in this state and every other place in the world is prevention.
The generation of tomorrow had to challenge the belief that drug use was a rite of passage into adulthood, he said.
Prevention is obviously best – if it works. Preventing the manufacture of meth, prevention pushers from getting people hooked and preventing addicts from obtaining supplies have all proven to be very difficult.
Working with drug addicts is very difficult. Meth addicts have a reputation for violence. Keeping them off highly drugs like methamphetamine has proven to be difficult.
Meth Help – “These pages will help you to make a change, find out about treatment and all the ways you can get support along the way.”