South Island campground bans Wicked Campers

Offensive slogans scrawled across the Wicked Campers vans have been accused of sexual or anti-women overtones. Photo / Supplied
Offensive slogans scrawled across the Wicked Campers vans have been accused of sexual or anti-women overtones. Photo / Supplied

A popular South Island campground has taken a stand to turn away Wicked Campers vans, as their offensive slogans spark controversy.

Abel Tasman's Kaiteriteri Beach Motor Camp has already turned away two Wicked Campers vans after making a decision on Monday to ban their vehicles from staying at their campground.

Kaiteriteri recreation reserve chief executive David Ross said the staff were "always unhappy" with the offensive slogans scrawled across the vans coming through to the site.

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"We have strong values and the kind of messages on most of the vans are not something we particularly want to see here," he said.
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Mr Ross said the only way to stop the offensive slogans from appearing on the vans was to ban them from entering into campgrounds.

"The thing that spurred me to make the decision is a lot of talk, particularly on a political level.

"The only thing you can do to stop this is to stop them from coming in," he said.

While the campground hadn't been "inundated" with Wicked Campers vans, Mr Ross said he had seen "quite a few on the roads here".

"I don't like it and we don't want it in our site."

He said while he "felt sorry" for the people who hired the vans but "I imagine you know what you get in for".

"It's clear the company is trying to be edgy and cool but wind it in a bit."

The Kaiteriteri Beach Motor Camp, part of the 300ha Kaiteriteri recreation reserve, has over 400 powered campsites.

Its website stated the campgrounds are booked out months before the Christmas holiday period, often by families who reserve the same campsite every year.

The decision from the motor camp came after an uproar over the offensive slogans on the back of the campervans with three Government ministers saying it had sexual or anti-women overtones.

Labour Party's transport spokesperson Sue Moroney said while Wicked Campers ignored the Advertising Standards Authority rulings to ban the slogans from appearing on their vehicles, the Government could stop this by creating minimum standards for rental vehicles.

"Most New Zealanders and tourists don't want to be subjected to these misogynistic slogans and the Government has the tools to fix the problem.

"Rental vehicles that breach such rulings should be deemed to fail minimum standards and ordered off the roads.

"If Paula Bennett is serious about getting rid of offensive statements on these rentals, she should get her Government to act now," Ms Moroney said.

It was reported earlier today, police complained to the chief censor's office and a Change.org petition has begun to have the slogans removed.

Wicked Campers was also dumped from the Department of Conservation's tourist information listing for those wanting to hire campervans.

- NZ Herald

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