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A Toronto city council member is pushing to require electronic music festivals to have paramedics on-site, to be paid for by promoters. Councillor Paula Fletcher of Ward 30 Toronto-Danforth is behind the initiative, and next week will ask the city's Community Development and Recreation Committee to impose the measure, reports Metro Toronto.
Fletcher told the publication that she hopes the requirement will prevent drug-related deaths, citing as an example the recent suspected drug-related death of a 19-year old woman at Toronto's Rebel nightclub. "It's such a tragic event," she said. "One death is too many."
Although she said that it was not "reasonable" to completely shut down electronic music festivals, she said "there should be very strong protocols in dealing with any emergency situations." Metro Toronto did not mention any initiatives besides Fletcher's motion for required emergency paramedics on-site at events, and THUMP has reached out to Fletcher with a request for comment.
In a statement provided to THUMP at the time of the incident in December, Rebel said they subject every patron of the venue to the full search, and employ an EMS company on-site for every concert and club night they do.
At that time, Fletcher called for a review of the incident at Rebel, and argued that there needed to be stricter oversight in the future.
"When you have a big star playing and you know it's a younger crowd that likes a certain type of drug, there needs to be a very strong medical plan for what can and mostly likely will be, overdoses," she said.
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