Another festival, another ‘shocked’ response from Police who are baffled that they have caught people trying to take illegal drugs into festival grounds.
Over the weekend many punters enjoyed Subsonic, some 4000 or so with just 20 charged carrying illegal drugs including amphetamines, LSD, Ketamine, cannabis and ecstasy.
Should be noted the above works out to be just 0.5% of the total number who enjoyed the festival safely.
A few weeks earlier it was another bush doof, earthcore that left police ‘frustrated’ that punters had attempted to take with them illegal drugs into the festival.
You generally hear the same response over and over, year on year when it comes to any sort of official statement, that Police just can’t understand why people take the risk when faced with charges, fines and potential health problems (but keep arresting different individuals over and over and over).
The most worrying part is the Police again saying if organisers don’t do more then they might find future events in jeopardy.
From an outsiders point of view it seems like the organisers are already doing their utmost to work with local Police and in general offering;
- Heavy security presence to keep festival safe at their own cost
- Free water to keep people hydrated at their own cost
- Medical services at their own cost
- Responsible Service of Alcohol wardens at each bar at their own cost
- Warnings to ticket holders of the police presence in advance and during events
- Total access of Police into and around the festival
- Total access of Police sniffer dogs into and around the festival
On top of this Police also often run road-side drug testing into and out of these festivals.
To then threaten festival organisers to shut down their businesses that have run successfully, often for years without many issues (in comparison to other large events) seems unproductive and could be seen as passing the buck in regards to who to blame when it comes to consuming illegal drugs.
From here you have to ask, what more can organisers do to stop drug use at their festivals?
It’s already been said that the Government will not support pill-testing at festivals and events even though it has been proven overseas to be a proactive approach in educating the end user about what they are taking and then making the choice as to consume it or not.
This does happen to be a direct contradiction to Police’s hardline stance that you just don’t know what you’re taking though and may look a bit silly.
Outside of that option and with festival organisers already doing their most, what do Police expect festival organisers do at this point??