New South Wales coroner recommends introducing pill testing and scrapping sniffer dogs
08.11.2019

New South Wales coroner recommends introducing pill testing and scrapping sniffer dogs

Pills
Image: Wikimedia Commons

What a surprise.

The New South Wales coroner’s office has officially handed down its findings into recent drug-related deaths at music festivals. In short, it recommends the Berejiklian state government do the opposite of what it’s currently doing in regards to drug policy.

The inquest looked into the drug-related deaths of six NSW festivalgoers over the past two summers. In the report released today, deputy state coroner Harriet Grahame said the evidence supporting pill testing was “compelling” and the NSW state government should hold a summit to develop an evidence-based drug policy.

“At the end of my reflection I am in no doubt whatsoever there is sufficient evidence to support a drug checking trial in this state,” she said.

“Drug checking is simply an evidence-based harm reduction strategy that should be trialled as soon as possible in NSW.”

In addition to pill testing, the report also recommends that sniffer dogs no longer be used at music festivals as high-visibility police tactics had “inherent dangers and few if any benefits”. ABC RMIT Fact Check recently found that “no drugs were found in 63 per cent of cases [in NSW] after a sniffer dog indicated their presence”.

For more info, check out the ABC’s report.

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