The organisers of Field Day have warned of a “very large drug dog operation”, writing in a statement that “police will be targeting all patrons, and prosecuting anyone found with drugs, not just dealers.”
Fuzzy posted a long statement titled ‘Drugs and Music Festival” with the aim to reduce harm from drug use at this year’s Field Day. They write that this year over 1,000 event and bar staff have been trained in harm minimisation strategies.
In addition there will be free harm minimisation training offered to festival-goers at the Red Cross ‘Chill Out Space’. It only takes ten minutes to learn, and would be a handy life skill regardless.
Not surprisingly, Fuzzy have been criticised for “working closely with the police” in regards to the sniffer dog operation, with some commentators noting the presence of police dogs often scares people into consuming large quantities of drugs before entering to evade detection.
Fuzzy replied to this concern, noting, “We can’t control whether there are sniffer dogs. But we can warn customers so they know in advance, not just discover the dogs when they get there. This is important to help minimise harm.”
Field Day is on January 1 at the Domain in Sydney. Last year’s event saw 184 people (out of 28,000) arrested for drug possession and/or dealing. 19 punters seeked first aid for drug-related issues.
Drugs and Music Festivals
We thought that the New Year’s Eve period would be a good time to get the message out about reducing harm from drug use at social occasions, including music festivals.
We believe the best defence against harmful drug use is education and peer support. This year we have trained over 1000 event and bar staff in specific harm minimisation strategies including:
• How to identify symptoms of alcohol and other drug intoxication or adverse reactions
• How to respond to an emergency situation
• How to put someone into the recovery position and clear their airways
At Field Day this year we will be offering free entry to the VIP area for the first 100 patrons to complete harm minimisation training at the Red Cross save-a-mate Chill Out Space. Head there when you arrive.
There will be a very large drug dog operation at the Field Day entrance this year. Fuzzy has worked closely with the police to facilitate this operation. Police will be targeting all patrons, and prosecuting anyone found with drugs, not just dealers.
Each year after Field Day the police send out a press release stating how many people were caught with drugs on them. Last year 184 people out of 28,000 were arrested. The number of people who visited first aid for drug related issues was 19.
What can you do?
• Look after your friends
• If you see someone looking unwell, tell a security guard
• Take note of where the Medical tent is at the event
• Stay hydrated – there is free water available from all the bars as well as multiple water refill outlets around the event
• Have rests in the shade throughout the day
• Don’t try to buy illegal drugs at the event
• Get free harm minimisation training at the Red Cross save-a-mate Chill Out Space – it only takes 10 minutes.
Media stories often portray music festivals as being all about drugs. If you are interviewed by a news crew, you can support Sydney’s culture by telling the people of Australia about what music festivals really mean to you: Being with friends, dancing and high quality music from around the world.