Petition to amend rave act
Festival safety has been a sensitive subject since the rise of EDM and due to deaths of young attendees. The never ending war on drugs continues to believe that they can stop the use of ‘illegal’ substances after that we humans have been doing it for thousands of years wether it be illegal or legal.
Dancesafe which is a volunteer-based organization sees to prevent dehydration and drug overdose by offering multiple services by being accessible for visitors without judgement so that the attendees can feel safe at the festivals.
Along with free water and earplugs, DanceSafe provides on-site drug tests and educational material so attendees can be 100 percent sure they are taking pure, untainted substances. Acting like the drug doesn’t exist isn’t going to make them go away, so why not allow free drug tests to minimize the death toll at music festivals? By accepting reality of the situation could certainly have saved Megan Tilton, who overdosed after taking “tainted ecstasy” at the Free Press Summer Festival and many more.
Unfortunately due to the 2002 Illicit Drug Anti-Proliferation Act a.k.a RAVE Act – which was written by then-Senator Joe Biden now Vice-President contains inherently vague language that prohibits drug tests to be publicly sponsored by festival organizers.
“The original lawmakers apparently intended for the measure to be directed at event producers who were actively involved in selling drugs. However, the law has been interpreted by many event producers (and their lawyers and insurance companies) to mean that basic safety measures (i.e. free water, cool down space, drug education materials, even the presence of DanceSafe!) “prove” that they know drug use is present, and make them vulnerable to prosecution under the RAVE Act.”
Pasquale Rotella founder of Insomniac has previously stated in a Reddit AMA that his company stopped working with DanceSafe because association with an organization that advocates drug testing is viewed by many authorities as “endorsing drug use rather than keeping people safe, and that can prevent producers from getting locations and organizing events” which puts us back in the progress of keeping festivals safe.