Back in the fall of 2013, UMass Amherst implemented a campus-wide ban on EDM due to a series of drug overdoses at previous events. Pretty Lights and Above & Beyond were just two of the acts cancelled during the ban, causing outrage among students who went to great lengths; starting a petition & conducting a flash-mob in their demand for democracy. In a campus-wide email, the students were informed that "The Molly-taking culture at these shows is real and now exceedingly dangerous to the health and safety of concert attendees. We know EDM concerts are not the only place a student can use Molly or other drugs, but the evidence is clear that Molly use is closely linked to EDM events." Check out the full story.
They fought hard, and now they've conquered.
UMass announced their plan to allow EDM events to once again take place at the Mullins Center at Amherst. Why? Because campus officials believe that the "drug hype" is over.
"It’s a different time and place. Our sense from public health and police is that the availability of the drug is not really at the level it was before. It’s not an epidemic."
- Ed Blaguszewski, UMass Amherst Spokesperson
All shows moving forward will be stocked with free water, increased security inside and outside of the arena, and a triage center for those under the influence who might require help. An additional 13 EMT units will be available throughout the entirety of future events. UMass has made it very clear, Mullins Center is a zero tolerance venue, and while glow-sticks, lights and kandi are welcome - drugs and alcohol will not be tolerated. Those found in possession will face the full force of the law should they violate the rules.
“We understood the situation, the severity of what was going on and there was a lot of worry and so for us it was ‘what can we do and what can the school do so these events are safer?"
- Rich Hutchinson, Co-Founder NVConcepts
The first EDM event scheduled since the ban at Mullins Center is scheduled to take place on September 19th, 2014.
Source: ABC 40 News Springfield