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Kmart’s light bulb jar ‘looks like a meth-smoking device’

By Joanna Delalande

The Bunbury mum of an ex-ice addict has lambasted Kmart Australia for selling a drink jar product which looks strikingly similar to methamphetamine drug paraphernalia.

The store advertised the “unique light bulb drink jars” as a “great addition to your tableware [that] can be used to serve drinks, beverages and more”.

A household survey shows Australians are far more aware now of the dangers meth posed than they were three years ago.

Created in the shape of a light bulb and accessorised with a straw, the product carries a strong resemblance to the homemade “crack pipe light bulbs” from which users without access to meth pipes sometimes consume their drugs.

Lina Pugh, who started the Facebook page “Ice in Bunbury: a mother’s nightmare” and leads a support group for families of those struggling with drug addiction, said she was “appalled” by the product.

Kmart’s product is distinctly similar to meth-smoking device.

“Thousands and thousands of families in regional WA are being torn apart because of meth use,” Mrs Pugh said.

“It is absolutely appalling that they are trying to make money out of something that is destroying lives.”

Mrs Pugh said her son used to smoke methamphetamine using a light bulb and she found Kmart’s product a “striking similarity”.

“If it is just a way to be trendy then it’s completely inappropriate,” she said.

Perplexed Facebook users have been posting their reactions to the jar.

“People are dying. And to me that product is a direct reference to a meth-smoking device.”

Julie Kent, who works on a program at Bunbury regional prison that brings victims of crime in touch with offenders, said she believed the product would be quickly identified by addicts as a smoking device.

Mrs Kent said she spoke to an offender on Monday who said he had stated smoking drugs in primary school, around age nine.

“Children already know what this stuff is about, they know what these light bulbs can be used for,” Mrs Kent said.

“Taking something that is so addictive and putting it out there as something that is fun and funny and cool.

“There’s nothing funny about this.”

The product attracted social media attention after people took to Facebook to express their surprise and bemusement.

One user posted a screenshot of the product page with the caption: “Do you want crackheads Kmart? Because that’s how you get crackheads.”

Another said: “Kmart, teaching people it’s normal to suck things out of light bulbs since 2016. Crackheads rejoice!!”

Former drug user and founder of rehabilitation facility Shalom House Peter Lyndon-James has helped many addicts since the centre opened in 2012, and he said the product could work well in terms of appealing to meth users.

“It’s a great marketing tool but it sends the wrong message,” he said.

“It will probably work but it is a sad way of selling a product.”

Kmart Australia has been contacted for comment.

If you or someone you know is struggling with a meth addiction, call the WA meth helpline at 1800 874 878.

Kmart Australia's drink jar product is a dead ringer for light bulbs used to smoke methamphetamine. ]]>