NSW Police is planning its biggest Splendour In The Grass operation yet – promising a 160-strong contingent comprising sniffer dogs, mounted police and the riot squad.
“Large numbers of both uniformed and plain-clothes police with drug-detection dogs will be patrolling the entire event footprint – they are on site to ensure the event is safe for everyone,” said Tweed/Byron Local Area Commander, Detective Superintendent Wayne Starling.
“Our officers will be targeting anyone involved with illegal drug use and supply, underage drinking, alcohol-related violence and anti-social behaviour.
“We are not the fun police but we want Splendour to be an incident-free event. Be warned that if you choose to break the law, disrupt other festival-goers or create issues for the local community – you can expect to be arrested.”
There have long been calls to ban sniffer dogs at festivals and introduce pill testing, passing the motion through the Senate.
The argument for a reduction of dogs and introduction of pill testing is quite simple: despite the current laws, people are still overdosing and dying from taking potentially shitty drugs at festivals (since they’re illegal); and the presence of sniffer dogs potentially sees punters downing all of their drugs in a hurry to avoid getting done.
It would, of course, help if the state governments were more open to addressing their drug law and policing shortfalls.
Stay safe Splendourinos!