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Young people ‘pre-load’ tablets to steer clear of police, SA MP says

Posted December 09, 2015 15:54:24

A zero-tolerance strategy to drugs is not functioning and harm minimisation techniques are required, according to a South Australian Labor MP.

Following the deaths of two young men and women at Stereosonic music festivals in Australia recently, like one particular in Adelaide, Labor Member for Fisher Nat Cook has called for changes in the state’s method to drug policing.

She mentioned having police sniffer dogs and police outdoors music festivals was forcing young people to make dangerous choices.

Ms Cook has a concentrate on youth and substance abuse problems, soon after her son Sam Davis was killed in a a single-punch attack.

“I have been on the ground and I have talked to young folks and the young men and women I’ve spoken to have told me that they pre-load multiple pills due to the fact they don’t want to get caught by drug dogs,” Ms Cook said.

“I believe proof from the weekend shows that only a few dozen tablets had been detected outdoors of the festival and then evidence from inside the festival tells us that hundreds, even thousands, of tablets produced it into that festival.”

All I’d say is I believe the police are undertaking a quite tough job in extremely tough situations.

Wellness Minister Jack Snelling

Opposition Liberal Leader Steven Marshall stated Ms Cook’s comments were a enormous departure from Labor Party policy.

“Extraordinary comments from the Member for Fisher who is primarily obtaining a go at the way that police go about tackling drugs in South Australia,” Mr Marshall said.

“I believe the Government demands to come out nowadays and rebuke her comments.”

Health Minister Jack Snelling said he supported Ms Cook, but when questioned would not repeat her views.

“I do not feel there is any doubt Nat Cook has worked extremely hard with our young individuals and attempting to defend our young individuals,” Mr Snelling stated.

“All I’d say is I feel the police are performing a very tough job in really difficult circumstances.”

Ms Cook mentioned she did not believe she was departing from Labor Party policy.

“I think what I am doing is I’m bringing a message to the party space from the neighborhood that young folks are telling me they’re nonetheless taking drugs, they are nevertheless getting drugs into festivals,” she mentioned.

In spite of advocating a harm minimisation method, Ms Cook mentioned she did not help pill testing at festivals.

“I’d like to see great evidence to say that it really does avert death but what I will say is that I’m nervous about it from a individual point of view, my opinion is that we can not guarantee that every little thing is going to get detected at that point,” she mentioned.

That is a position the Wellness Minister does agree with.

“These kind of pills are really tough to detect and I feel it really is a quite, quite important that our message to young men and women,” Mr Snelling stated.

“Our message to society is quite clear and unambiguous: illicit drug taking is inherently unsafe.”

Topics: dance-music, drugs-and-substance-abuse, government-and-politics, states-and-territories, adelaide-5000, sa

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