News March 1, 2019

NSW government responds to festival promoters over planned class action

NSW government responds to festival promoters over planned class action

The has responded to a query from TMN in an effort to clarify the new license governing higher risk festivals that came into effect this morning.

Earlier today, TMN revealed that five festival promoters of the 14 events on the government’s “high risk” list are planning to take legal action against the government.

A government spokesperson has since told TMN that it would be “inappropriate to comment on any impending legal proceedings”.

However, the spokesperson also went on to explain the motivation behind the government’s moves. Read the full response below.


The NSW government wants music festivals to thrive – but serious drug related illnesses and deaths have demonstrated that we need to help make a small number of festivals safer.

The new licence is designed to support music festival operators, particularly those who are dealing with the evolving challenge of illegal drug use at their festivals, to help ensure we don’t see a repeat of the five festival deaths in 2018.

The NSW government will continue to work with operators of festivals required to obtain a music festival licence to ensure they have appropriate safety arrangements in place, and can comply with the new licensing scheme.

Safety management plans may include requirements for medical assistance areas, evacuation points, signage to the location of health services and water stations and entry and exit points for emergency vehicles.

Most operators, including operators of higher risk festivals, are committed to safety and work hard to do the right thing – now they will have access to more expert advice and support to help them run safer events.”.


The spokesperson also added that the government is working with festival organisers to address the specific risks of their event and proposed measures to target those risks.

A copy of the Regulation can be accessed here.

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