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Pill testing will be launched in Queensland for the first time this month at a music festival where two young people died five years ago.

Ebony Greening, 22, and Dassarn Tarbutt, 24, were discovered dead in their tent at the Rabbits Eat Lettuce festival, near Warwick, inland of the Gold Coast, in April 2019.

The pair had consumed a deadly mixture of drugs.

This week, the Queensland government announced the state will become the second Australian jurisdiction to offer pill testing, after the ACT.

Health Minister Shannon Fentiman said nearly $1 million was being spent to fund pill testing services in Queensland during the next two years.

A statewide monitoring system would be developed for the government by the University of Queensland, she said.

Fixed-site pill testing services will start next month at Bowen Hills, in Brisbane’s inner north.

Plans for a second site would be rolled out later.

“I want to be clear that these services are all about harm minimisation,” Fentiman said.

“We don’t want people ending up in our emergency departments, or worse, losing their life.”

The Rabbits Eat Lettuce festival is being held over the Easter long weekend from March 28 to April 1.

Health experts, campaigners and politicians are pushing for pill testing to be introduced in other states.

The Greens, the Animal Justice Party and Legalise Cannabis Victoria parties have a bill before Victorian parliament that would allow mobile testing stations at major music festivals, as well as a fixed site.

Earlier this month, a young man died from a suspected drug overdose at a music festival in the Grampians region of Victoria.

Aspiring DJ Antony Maugeri, 23, died shortly after being airlifted to hospital in a critical condition from the Pitch Arts and Music Festival in Mafeking, west of Ararat.

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