Media Release: Emergency services workers concerns for extending the grip of 2am alcohol trading to residential suburbs of the city
Emergency services workers have expressed concerns on a proposal by the City of Sydney which would extend trading hours, for bars across Sydney and potentially spread alcohol related violence to residential parts of the city.
Last Drinks campaign spokesperson Dr Tony Sara said that while the Coalition had no issue with extended hours for businesses that did not sell alcohol, there were concerns that the proposal to extend trading for bars and restaurants could lead to an increase in alcohol related assaults in residential areas.
“When trading hours are extended, rates of alcohol related violence on our streets skyrocket. For every hour that a bar remains open, the rate of alcohol-related violence spikes by 40 per cent.”
“We should be rolling out Sydney’s successful and modest alcohol laws across all suburbs, not looking for more ways to sell alcohol for longer, bringing alcohol related violence and sexual assault to residential areas of the city.”
“With more venues selling liquor for longer, there is a real risk we end up making Sydney’s problem with alcohol related violence worse, not better.”
“Additionally, we must be mindful that even if we kept bar trading hours as they are, if more retail businesses open later, the NSW Government needs to commit to providing extra emergency services workers to cope with the inevitable increase in demand when more people are out on the streets at night.”
Dr Sara said that after the lockout laws were introduced, Kings Cross saw a 59.2 per cent decrease in assaults between 6pm and 1.30am and a staggering 93.9 per cent decrease between 3am and 6am.
“Incidences of indecent and sexual assault in Kings Cross, the primary victims being women, have both reduced by almost 50%.”
“St Vincent’s Hospital saw a 50% reduction in serious head injuries between 8pm and 8am. All of these successes are now at risk.”
“It is clear that any proposal which extends trading hours for bars is putting young lives in harm’s way.”