Smashed Avocado Emerges As Staunch Advocate For Festival Pill Testing

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It’s universally regarded as the ultimate symbol of leftist, inner-city hipsterism, and now, the humble ‘smashed avocado’ has been co-opted for another cause which is likely to start the synapses of conservatives everywhere misfiring.

‘The Smashed Avocado Movement’ – a new activist organisation looking to “reduce apathy and promote engagement within communities around progressive values, issues and solutions” – is joining forces with Reason ACT for a rally to demand pill testing at November’s Spilt Milk Festival in Canberra, along with other music festivals nationwide.

It follows the recent announcement by NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian that she would seek to close down the popular Defqon.1 music festival in Sydney, after two people died from ‘party drug’ overdoses. And that followed a landmark trial in Canberra earlier this year at the Groovin The Moo festival, where 128 participants had their drugs tested by the STA-Safe Consortium, two of which were found to be deadly. There were zero deaths at the Groovin The Moo.

Co-founder of The Smashed Avocado Movement, Max Black said the facts show that “last century’s zero-tolerance approach doesn’t work”.

“Pill testing does work, and it can happen now. It’s a harm reduction strategy that is focused on reducing the risks and creating a space for an informed decision to be made by people who use drugs.

“These are our children, our friends and our loved ones. It is time to treat this as a health issue and not a criminal issue. If you would like to help us keep our people who use drugs safe and alive, please join us at the rally and support us to demand pill testing now.”

Reason (formerly the Australian Sex Party) has been a long-time advocate for sensible drug law reform policy in Australia, and in particular advocated for pill testing to be legislated.

The ‘Support Pill Testing at Music Festivals Rally’ will be held at Garema Place, Canberra, on Saturday 6th October at 12 pm. You can reach the Smashed Avocado Movement at smashedavocadomovement@gmail.com

Chris Graham

Chris Graham is the publisher and editor of New Matilda. He is the former founding managing editor of the National Indigenous Times and Tracker magazine. Chris has won a Walkley Award, a Walkley High Commendation and two Human Rights Awards for his reporting. He lives in Brisbane and splits his time between Stradbroke Island, where New Matilda is based, and the mainland.

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