Dance party drug probe

Christchurch Press, 8 July 1999

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NELSON -- A Nelson-based group investigating drug use at dance parties such as the Gathering hopes recommendations from its report will be adopted nationwide.

Health Action was commissioned to write the report by the Ministry of Health as part of its National Drug Policy. The group spent May canvassing the views of dance party patrons and promoters to find out what practices were used in the national dance party scene, and what else could be done. The group sought the opinions of patrons and promoters over the Internet, and also talked with the groups in Wellington and Dunedin.

Health Action member Jose Cachemaille said the report aimed "to produce material with dance party promoters which they can use as a guide for running safer dance parties, and also to develop drug information resources such as brochures and flyers for the people attending the events. "There was a real need to increase promoters' awareness that they have a duty of care to provide safe environments for people attending these events," she said.

Ms Cachemaille worked as a promoter for the Gathering for two years. During that time she developed safety and information systems that she said were still used at the New Year's Eve party.--NZPA

Christchurch Press, 8 July 1999

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