The Commonwealth Bank employee’s death at a Sydney electronic music festival has reopened the discussion over pill testing at events, with one charity executive accusing the government of having “blood on their hands.”
At the Transmission Festival, which was hosted on Saturday afternoon at the Sydney Showground, Kieran Ngo, 26, passed away after taking a tablet.
Since 12 other people were also sent to the hospital after consuming tablets, NSW Police are now looking into whether a contaminated batch of MDMA is spreading through Sydney. He is thought to have taken MDMA.
Greg Chipp, managing director of Drug Policy Australia, blasted the government for being “culpable” for the deaths of young people by refusing to implement pill testing at festivals in the wake of Mr. Ngo’s terrible passing.
Pill testing includes examining illegal medications to identify any potentially hazardous ingredients.
The government has consistently rejected proposals to implement pill testing at concerts, nightclubs, and other comparable locations.
Since there is “no safe way to take drugs,” the NSW Police Minister previously disallowed pill testing at the state’s events.
But according to Mr. Chipp, the testing might put an end to the continuous tragedy of children dying at festivals.
If the tablets were tested, he claimed, “the tragedies associated with the deaths of young people utilizing drugs could easily be stopped.”
“The government must look out for its people’s health. They are responsible for the catastrophes because they willfully refused to implement pill testing despite knowing that hundreds of thousands of Australians may use drugs, some of which include deadly ingredients.
They must take action and quit sticking their heads in the sand. I’m directly speaking to Dominic Perrottet here as they continue to accept this tragedy.
The administration continues to make politically appealing moves while maintaining a critical attitude toward drug users.
“The Canberra trial was a spectacular success and demonstrated the viability of pill testing,”
We’ve been in touch with the Ministry of Health and Mr. Perrottet’s office for comments.
Despite the introduction of drug bins and the use of sniffer dogs by the government, drug overdoses occur often at Australian events.
In October, 18 attendees of two music events who overdosed were sent to the hospital.
At Knockout Outdoor at Sydney Olympic Park and Listen Out in Centennial Park, more than 70 people were detained for drug possession, while four more were detained for drug supply.
Even though amnesty bins were set up at both events so that attendees may dispose of their drugs without worrying about getting caught, those arrests nonetheless occurred.
The policy was implemented as a result of a coronial inquest recommendation made in 2020 concerning the deaths of six young people that occurred between December 2017 and January 2019 at music events in NSW.
All of the festival fatalities involved MDMA or ecstasy use: Alex Ross-King, 19, Joshua Tam, 22, Callum Brosnan, 21, Diana Nguyen, 21, and Joseph Pham, 23.
The bodies of five of the six festival-goers also contained other prohibited narcotics.
The inquest also advocated for a number of further actions, such as pill-testing, a ban on sniffer dog use, and a decrease in the frequency of strip searches.
The government disregarded all advice and has subsequently discouraged drug use at festivals by utilizing police sniffer dogs.
There have been proposals for pill testing, but NSW Police Minister Paul Toole has previously rejected them, stating that “there is no safe method to use narcotics.”
Tragically, too many families and communities are dealing with the effects of those who believe that using illegal drugs can be done in a secure manner, he told The Australian.
I strongly support the NSW Police Force’s efforts to prevent the sale and consumption of illegal narcotics before it is too late. That includes employing canines that search for drugs.
The NSW Government stated that illicit substances will continue to be prohibited in its announcement last month of the single-largest investment in evidence-based alcohol and other drug (AOD) programs in the State’s history.
There is no safe way to consume drugs, I’ll say it again.
A person in possession of a drug may test the pill to determine what compounds are inside at a pill testing facility.
They are typically placed in locations where drug use is most likely to occur, such as music festivals, nightclubs, or dance events.
They are employed in cities like Toronto and New Zealand, but Australia has eschewed them.
A six-month investigation that started in Canberra last year, however, discovered that 40% of cocaine samples examined did not truly contain cocaine.
Users can test their recreational narcotics for free as part of a six-month pilot program that started in late July at the City Community Health Centre in Canberra with the goal of lowering the danger of overdose.
In two months, CanTEST examined more than 150 samples, of which 34 were rejected after the owner learned what was in their medication.
Results from September showed that a sample of cocaine was discovered to contain the painkiller and anti-inflammatory medication dimethyl sulfone, while another sample that was initially thought to be methamphetamine turned out to be sugar.
»Experts enraged by Australian governments refusal of pill testing«