Rape Crisis uneasy over ethics of date rape drinks test kit

Rape Crisis Scotland has denounced the launch of a kit designed to detect the presence of date-rape drugs in drinks.

The Drink Detective kit can be used to test for the presence of Rohypnol, ketamine and GHB - the three most common substances used in drug-related rapes.

The matchbox-sized kit will be sold for £3.95 in chemists and other outlets where condoms are sold, and there are plans to install vending machines in pubs and clubs.

"We are wary about companies seeking to profit from the fear of rape," said Sandy Brindley, national development worker at Rape Crisis Scotland.

"Our impression is that the product is of limited value. Someone would have to identify themselves as being at risk before they would use it, by which time it may be too late."

Bloomsbury Innovations, which produces Drink Detective, says it will donate 1-2 per cent of the proceeds to the Roofie Foundation, an independent organisation that operates a helpline for people affected by drug-related rape.

Graham Rhodes, co-founder of the Roofie Foundation, said that any proceeds would contribute towards the operating costs of the helpline.

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