Groovin the Moo, the country’s first festival to provide free pill testing to punters, will no longer have the service on site.
Pill Testing Australia, the company who conducts the tests on site, were unable to secure public liability insurance for this weekend’s event, to be held in Canberra.
Festival organisers, as well as the ACT government, were both in support of the service – which makes it even more of a shame, considering it had been successful at Groovin the Moo’s events there in 2018 and 2019.
Pill Testing Australia spokesman Gino Vambuca explained that private insurance companies had proposed unrealistic deadlines and expectations of the organisation.
“It’s sad and quite dangerous in a way that you’d pull this rug out from underneath us now, because whether you like it or not we know what happens — some people will use drugs,” he said.
“They’ve declined at the last minute to proceed with insuring us, and requiring a heap of other information that was impossible to provide them with at such short notice, effectively terminating our service.”
Pill Testing Australia had reportedly been planning to have over 40 volunteers, including health professionals, working on site at Groovin the Moo Canberra.
At present, both NSW and federal governments have opposed pill testing at events, making Groovin the Moo an anomaly.
Thousands are expected to attend the festival in Canberra this weekend, the first Groovin the Moo tour in two years, headlined by the Hilltop Hoods and featuring performances by the likes of Broods, Alice Ivy and more.