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The Fight Against Drink Spikers

August 3 2005

The Fight Against Drink Spikers

Drinkers in New Zealand bars can guard against their drinks being spiked with a new detection kit following a successful launch of the technology in Australia.

The New Zealand Drug Detection Agency Limited (NZDDA) based in Albany, Auckland, has released its Drink Spike Detector campaign with a personal protection kit (6 tests per kit) backed with a bar coaster impregnated with sensitised patches which warn at-risk young people.

The kits detect substances GHB (also known as Fantasy, Liquid Ecstasy or Grievous Bodily Harm) and Ketamine (Special K, Kitty Kat, or K) at levels that would incapacitate the drinker. NZDDA warns that alcohol itself is one drug among various others able to incapacitate but that the kit covers the two most frequently encountered culprits.

'It raises the awareness of the issue of drink spiking and drug- facilitated crime' says NZDDA's Kirk Hardy 'and can deter would-be spikers from tampering with drinks because of the increased possibility of being caught.'

The bar coaster is targeted at business/licensed premises wanting to take a pro-active stance against drink spiking, he says, adding that coasters are having a huge success in Australia in raising the awareness of a particularly awful sexual crime.

'I hope that licensed premises and major breweries will follow Australia?s example in an effort to help deter would-be drink spikers. There is a need to recognise these types of sexual crimes as a major problem in which the New Zealand public can play a part in solving.

'We recognise that the kits are not the absolute solution to this problem, but we are duty bound and must make everyone aware of measures they can take to guard against such offences. We must enable people to make an informed choice.'


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