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Why a Melbourne council wants to ‘put up the white flag’ to music festival drugs

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The mayor of a Melbourne council admits its decision to pursue pill testing  is “putting up the white flag”.

The City of Port Phillip proposes running the state’s first pill testing service at music festivals in a move to put pressure on the Andrews Government.

That news comes as a group of of influential crossbench MPs will today demand the government allow pill testing in a bid to try stop drug overdoses.

“I think it shows where the public support has gone. You’ve got the Animal Justice Party standing in unity on pill testing with the Liberal Democrats.”
– Fiona Patten.

Port Phillip mayor Dick Gross admitted to Ross and John his council’s position seemed “counter-intuitive”.

But he says a new approach is needed to stop young people dying.

“Sometimes bans create problems and mean people pursue the banned activity in a more unsafe way,” he said.

“We’re not condoning drug use but, yes, it is sort of putting up the white flag on the war on drugs because the war on drugs has patently failed.”

Click PLAY to hear the full interview

Click PLAY below to hear Fiona Patten speak with Neil Mitchell

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