In the wake of the introduction of harsh new festival policies, fresh calls have come for an apology from NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian. 

Last week, new legislation came into effect which was applied to a select amount of New South Wales festivals to ‘enhance safety.’ This legislation followed multiple deaths at NSW festivals, with drug use allegedly being to blame.

Jason Ayoubi, an organiser of Days Like This, has exclusively told TIO that Berejiklian must now apologise for the damage she has allegedly done to the festivals industry.

In an official statement to TIO, Ayoubi commented, “(We’d like) to have the Premier and Racing minister immediately retract our events from the list and publicly apologise for naming and shaming the 14 scapegoat festivals.”

He added, “We would like them to acknowledge that they have unfairly damaged our businesses and our reputations in regard to the running of safe events.”

Simon Beckingham, who works on Lost Paradise and Lost Picnic believes that there needs to be a more holistic and consultative festivals policy process. He believes that law-makers and governments must involve industry stakeholders in all policy-making processes.

Beckingham commented exclusively to TIO that “the outcome we all want hasn’t changed. The music industry wants the government to consult with the industry on policy, which supports the music industry and really identifies how we can make events safer through proper research and data.”

He adds, “There has to be a commitment from government for more harm reduction and education to support some of these complex issues. It is not fair to push what is a society wide issue onto a promoter.”

Unfortunately it seems that no amount of work will fix this mess. “The damage this has done to our brands, cannot be undone unfortunately.”

Eligible New South Wales residents vote later this month.