An advocate for cannabis legalisation says Māori should light up at the idea of a legal marketplace.

Make It Legal NZ is talking heart from a Horizon Research survey of nearly 1600 New Zealanders showing 59 percent would vote yes in support for the proposed law change, up from 54 percent in February.

Spokesperson Sandra Murray says a regulated market will protect the entire community by introducing a strict R20 age limit, caps on potency levels and restricting sales to licensed premises.

She says Māori fears it will lead to an increase in drug use aren’t backed by research.

“They see their people, they see their communities harmed by drug use and they go ‘we don’t want more drug use.’ There’s not going to be an increase in cannabis use after law reform because everyone who wants to use it already,” Ms Murray.

She says those opposed to the law change need to say why they want to leave the drug trade in the hands of criminals.

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