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Lancashire Police back initiative allowing clubbers to test drugs for purity

A new strategy to reduce drug related deaths

  • Harrison Williams
  • 5 December 2016

The Lancashire Police force is backing a new initiative that will allow people in Preston to legally take drugs like cocaine and MDMA if they subject the substances to a chemical purity test beforehand.

In order for drug users to test their substances, walk-in booths will be set up in the city on Friday and Saturday nights for clubbers to use. Individuals will submit their drugs to a test involving a scan using a laser, which will give their Class A drugs a purity reading in approximately 30 minutes.

After the drugs are returned to the user with the proven purity reading, individuals will be able to decide if they want to take the drugs or they can return the samples to the booth. Returned samples will then be destroyed.

The initiative is being run by a group called the Loop, a charity organization that set up similar booths at music festivals in the past and found that a fifth of users decide to throw out their drugs after discovering the purity level.

Led by Loop co-director Fiona Measham, a professor of criminology at Durham University, it’s clear that the initiative is a bit radical but could have a significantly positive impact on society and club culture: "If we look at the evidence of other countries which already have this drug testing, we've found they have much lower mortality rates in relation to drugs. In Switzerland, they've had no party drug deaths for the last seven years. In the UK, 57 people died last year from ecstasy."

However, critics of Loop’s movement believe this advocates for drug use and will have negative results involving even more drug users than ever before. At this point, only time will tell.

Harrison is Mixmag's East Coast Editor. Follow him on Twitter here

[via: IB Times]

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