Time to roll alcohol measures out state-wide, Premier

Crime statistics released today confirming a huge decline in non-domestic violence in the greater Sydney CBD area prove the alcohol restrictions are working and should now be rolled out in alcohol-violence hotspots around the state.

The NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research released today show a 32 per cent drop in assaults in Kings Cross and a 40 per cent cut in the CBD assault rate.

Last Drinks coalition spokesperson and Health Services Union Secretary Gerard Hayes said it’s time the NSW Government, and other governments across the country, rolled the modest alcohol restrictions out in other communities struggling with alcohol-fuelled violence problems.

“The difference the modest alcohol restrictions have made to the streets of Kings Cross and the Sydney CBD is remarkable,” Mr Hayes said.

“There’s no doubt that the reduction in trading hours, lock-outs and restrictions on high alcohol-content drinks have saved lives.

“Emergency service workers across the state want to know when the NSW Premier is going to introduce the modest measures in other alcohol-related violence hotspots.

“The NSW Government, and other governments around the country, should be looking at these statistics as an example of what is possible in other communities.

Mr Hayes said if the drop in assaults on innocent victims wasn’t evidence enough of the need to roll the restrictions out in other areas, the substantial savings in terms of health and emergency services should be.

“The huge decrease in crime has freed our emergency services up to combat other crime and health issues.

“Alcohol-fuelled violence is a huge drain on our emergency services. Cutting non-domestic assaults by 32 per cent in Kings Cross and 40 per cent in the CBD has economic benefits as well as the obvious social gains.

“Emergency service workers have known for quite some time that the trading hours restrictions are working to reduce the number of violent late night assaults in Kings Cross and the surrounds and these latest statistics confirm that.

“Violence is still a serious problem on our streets and even one violent assault is too many, but this is proof that by closing licenced venues a few hours earlier can severely cut the number of incidents.”

The Last Drinks coalition represents NSW emergency service workers and includes doctors, police, nurses and paramedics.

Visit www.lastdrinks.org.au for more information.

Click here to view the FARE media release.