Vic MP admits drug use in pill test call

A Victorian Greens MP has admitted taking drugs, as her party tries to introduce a bill for pill testing into state parliament.


Victorian Greens MP Ellen Sandell has admitted to trying drugs as her party pushes for pill testing. (AAP)

Victorian Greens MP Ellen Sandell has admitted to trying drugs while a student as her party pushes for pill testing following a spate of festival deaths.

The minor party will introduce a bill on Thursday which calls for fixed-site pill testing, roving tests at music festivals and publication of results for real time warnings of toxic batches on the market.

"My friends and I a couple of times took what we thought was ecstasy, what we thought was MDMA, but in reality we had no idea what it was, it could have been anything and I consider myself very lucky it wasn't something more dangerous or even more deadly," Ms Sandell told reporters on Thursday.

The Greens says they have asked the Andrews government what advice it has received from the health department on pill testing, but have received nothing.

"We can only assume they have received advice from the health department, recommending pill testing and are ignoring that advice," Ms Sandell said.

Health Minister Jenny Mikakos told reporters the government did not support pill testing based on advice from Victoria Police, but did not say whether she had received advice from her department.

She said the government had other harm minimisation policies in place, including the supervised injecting room at Richmond to address heroin addiction, the ice action plan and more treatment beds.

The bill is not expected to succeed, with both the government and opposition repeatedly saying no to the cause in the past.

"Pill testing is not going to make people safer, the real risk is that pill testing will just give people a false sense of security. You can overdose as easily on a pure pill as you can on an adulterated one," Opposition Leader Michael O'Brien told reporters on Thursday.

However, the Greens are hopeful the government will be swayed by the inclusion of a fixed-site option, and said the quality of the drugs improved in parts of the world where that regime existed.

Published 21 February 2019 at 11:48am
Source: AAP