Pill Testing Australia has launched a new ad to promote the harm reduction measure at local music festivals, in the hopes of convincing Australian policy-makers to adopt the practice nationwide.
Mumbrella reports the ad, directed by Dylan Harrison from Hooligan Collective, shows a young man hesitating at the top of a cliff while his friends dive into the water below.
A labcoat-wearing figure appears beside him. She says she can’t stop him from taking the leap, but she can tell him the likely outcomes of the dive. The scene then cuts to a pill testing tent at a music festival. The inference is clear: taking a pill without testing it is like taking a blind jump.
While there’s no set roll-out for the ad on television, you can have a gander at the clip below.
The ad was released on Friday, presaging the release of today’s report on the second Pill Testing Australia trial at Canberra’s Groovin The Moo festival.
The report reflects earlier findings from the successful April trial, including the fact that seven samples containing the potentially deadly N-ethyl pentylone were identified and discarded before consumption by punters.
The report also puts the scale of the operation into perspective. The service was “close to capacity” between 1pm and 6pm, with four qualified chemists analysing “an average rate of one sample every 2-3 minutes.”
That’s despite a lack of on-site signage alerting punters to the operation.
The report also notes beneficial cross-communication between the pill testing site and the medical tent, which were both housed in the same festival precinct:
The medical tent was constantly informed of the nature of products being identified, and the different presentations that they may expect. In the other direction, patrons who had arrived at the medical tent unwell as a consequence of illicit drug use, were asked whether they would be amenable to having the substances in their possession analysed, and overwhelmingly, their response was positive.
Despite numerous drug-related deaths at music festivals in the past twelve months, many other Australian jurisdictions remain reluctant to adopt pill testing trials at festivals. If all goes to plan, the launch of the ad and the Groovin The Moo report may budge the needle.
You can read the full thing here.