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TOPIC: The Do Lab Advocates Harm Reduction at Festivals

The Do Lab Advocates Harm Reduction at Festivals 07 Jun 2015 23:30 #7458

  • Vanessa.L
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Having recently attended Lightning in a Bottle, one of The Do Lab's largest productions, I now understand the intrigue and passion behind transformative festivals. One may start the day with a restorative yoga session, enjoy an afternoon filled with informative workshops and varying speakers, then end the night submerged in a colorfully vibrant world of sculptures, art, live performances and music. With so much for our sensors to marvel on, there is no denying that some attendees may be... enhancing their experience with the help of various psychedelics and narcotics.

Do Lab has partnered with DanceSafe - an organization that focuses on health and harm reduction at festivals and club venues - and the Zendo Project - a program advocated by the Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies and offers aid to those having a difficult experience while on psychedelic drugs - in order to provide more knowledge and safety awareness in regards to experimental use; rather than disregard the fact that some guests at the drug-free event will in fact manage to sneak in and consume substances. Part of what DanceSafe does is create a judgement-free platform in which people can become educated on matters regarding recreational use; dehydration, heat stroke and hyponetremia are some of the dangers discussed at the booth. They are also known for providing condoms, earplugs and free water at events. Though it was not permitted at this year's LiB due to federal regulation concerns, the company eliminates risk further by offering on-site DanceSafe drug testing kits, which allows the user to be aware of exactly what components are in the substances they're taking. This method, though seemingly controversial, encourages those who utilize substances recreationally to take a more cautious, informed approach. The Zendo Project is formed by a group of therapists whom are stationed in the festival, ready to assist in guiding those through an uncomfortable or upsetting time.

With such large numbers of people using drugs recreationally at festivals all over the world, countless have resulted in arrests and/or overdoses. This scene is not new, yet rates of those taking drugs on-site has not reduced as an affect of these dangerous outcomes. Music Festival companies are coming to terms with the fact that they cannot stop people from taking substances altogether; instead, the main focus now is on education and safety. By acknowledging the realities of the issue and taking a different angled approach, these organizations are teaming up with Festivals to stop misuse and harm before it occurs.
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