FKN YES: Pill-Testing Programs Gain Police & Pollie Support Outside NSW

Harm reduction proponents, rejoice: a proposed pilot run of pill-testing at music festivals may be closer to fruition, as the pair behind the idea have revealed they’ve been in “high-level” talks with several state police departments. 

But, still, there’s been no progress in New South Wales – where they originally planned to roll out the program at Splendour In The Grass and the now-defunct Stereosonic.

The Canberra Times report physician David Caldicott explained last week how far the discussions had gone, saying “There are very senior police supporting us currently. There are very senior politicians supporting us currently. 

We are now working out how we can have a system in place for the forthcoming festival season.”

Caldicott also confirmed the progress wasn’t just talk, with funding for the program apparently already in the pipeline. Still, the states in question weren’t named. 

This news comes on the tail of two suspected overdoses at Groovin The Moo in Maitland, which left a 15-year-old in a critical condition. 

On those incidents, Caldicott said “the fact that people got sick there, the fact they were so young, obviously emphasises the ongoing need for this.

Even the experts have underestimated the nature of the market. It is absolutely going to be far worse next season.”
Of course, the NSW state government has been consistently adamant that such programs would increase drug use and wouldn’t really help anyone but suppliers. And they’d still be illegal there, anyway.

If these trials do kick off elsewhere – and if their results are as positive as many, many experts believe ’em to be – then maybe, just maybe, Australia could embrace a new way of dealing with a very serious problem. 

Source: Canberra Times. 
Photo: Tao Jones / Groovin The Moo / Facebook.