Pill testing at music festivals not the answer, says Family First

Education and prevention, not greenlighting the use of dangerous drugs, is the way stop deaths of young people at music festivals, according to Family First.

National Director, Lyle Shelton, said the party would oppose moves to introduce pill testing if it achieves parliamentary representation.

His comments come as Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk introduces the testing of pills cooked up by bikie gangs or overseas crime syndicates for the use of young people.

“While we understand the desire to reduce the harm caused by illicit drug use at music festivals, we believe that drug testing stations are not the solution.

“By providing a false sense of security, drug testing stations will only increase the risk of harm to festival-goers.

“Drug testing stations give the impression that the drugs being consumed are safe, when in fact, there is no such thing as a safe illegal drug, even if tested. Drugs obtained from illegal sources are often laced with harmful substances, and the purity and potency of drugs can vary widely, making it difficult to accurately determine their safety.

“Moreover, drug testing stations do not address the root causes of drug use. Rather than focusing on harm reduction, we should be investing in prevention, education, and treatment programs that address the underlying issues that lead to drug use.

"Drug testing stations send the wrong message to young people. We need to prioritise education and prevention efforts that address the root causes of drug use, rather than relying on measures that give a false sense of security,” Mr Shelton said.