While events operators and music fans ring their hands over Gladys Berejiklian’s so called “war on festivals” in NSW, it’s a different story in the ACT where officials have approved pill testing at Canberra’s Groovin the Moo.
For the second successive year, Chief Minister Andrew Barr has okayed a trial at the music festival, which is set to take place April 28 at Exhibition Park with a bill featuring Hilltop Hoods, Hermitude, TOKiMONSTA, Billie Eilish, Jack River and many others.
It’s a controversial move and one Berejiklian and her fellow Liberals won’t have a bar of, though Barr takes a holistic approach. Governments have a duty to not only curb substance abuse but to also back projects that limit the damage connected with drug use, he says.
The ACT Government has given the green light for a pill testing trial to occur at the Groovin the Moo music festival in April.
Governments have a responsibility to not only try and prevent drug use but also to support initiatives that reduce the harms associated with drug use.
— Andrew Barr MLA (@ABarrMLA) February 18, 2019
“Pill testing does not make taking illicit drugs safe and our message to the community will always be, don’t take drugs,” Barr tweeted on Monday night. “However, pill testing provides a health intervention at the point when someone is making the decision to take a pill.”