Yesterday Groovin the Moo festival in Canberra hosted the second trial of pill testing in Australia.
Like the first, it’s being hailed a huge success(1).
Seven people dumped pills containing a potentially deadly substance.
More than 230 festival-goers used the pill-testing service, with seven substances found to contain the potentially lethal n-ethylpentylone.
N-ethylpentylone is a new substance, also known as ephylone and βk-EPDB. It was first seen in the USA in 2016. It has been linked to a number of overdose deaths(2), mass-casualty incidents (3), and has increasingly been passed off as MDMA.
Physical effects can include raised pulse and blood pressure, high body temperature, convulsions, acidosis, and rapid muscle breakdown.
Psychological effects include agitation, paranoia, a compulsion to redose, difficulty sleeping for up to 36 hours, and temporary psychosis.
I doubt your local dealer would even know this information, let alone tell you. And this is the true value of pill testing.
Pill testing informs users what they are taking is dangerous and has been shown to reduce overdoses and risk-taking behaviour. This is why we need pill testing in Victoria.
20 years of evidence from Europe, UK and North American proves pill testing protects young people from harm and the list of organisations in support grows every day.
In this federal election, The Greens are the only party to back pill testing, with Senator Richard Di Natale saying it was a “crucial part of any effective drug policy”.
The Victorian Greens have begun the work to legalise pill testing in Victoria, but we need your help to make it a reality. Email Dan Andrews and let him know you want pill testing in Victoria.
You can read more about pill testing here.
Tim Read MP.
Victorian Greens spokesperson on health and drug law reform.