NSW Action on Alcohol


As we all know and from previous posts alcohol fuelled violence has been in the headlines a lot over the last twelve months. Well the NSW Government has introduced change and includes a change to trading conditions for large clubs and pubs and bottle shops. Bottle Shops will have to close by 10pm, Venues included in the changes will have a lock out at 1.30am and have to stop serving alcohol at 3am. Now there has been mixed reactions to the new rules with some venues supporting the move as well as some individuals. Now there will also be a raft of changes including increased bus services and other things to go along with the changes. So what do I think? 

I fully support changes to the system. After all venues will be allowed to stay open after 3am if they decide to as long as they don’t serve alcohol. If a person is out for a fun night then they shouldn’t need to be drinking to have a good night. If they do then there are bigger issues at play. A lockout at 1.30am is also good because it may lead to those who decide that after they are bored in that venue to head home. However the downside is that these changes are limited to a geographical catchment and it may just lead to people spreading out to places and venues outside of that catchment. Ideally though this will be a trial and should eventually be rolled out across the state. The success of this will rely on other factors as well. The public transport system needs to be running 24 hours, taxi companies will need to relook at their rosters (as I believe 3am is changeover time), and an increased police presence at key times. This is a massive change, not only to trading hours as such but it will require a mind/cultural shift. 

I think it’s time that these type of changes were rolled out across the country. The government needs to take a greater responsibility in alcohol and other problems. If a venue can’t survive with reduced hours then they need to get out of the business. It’s time venue owners took greater responsibilities as they are in a business that deals in a drug so it should be under greater regulation and monitoring. They also need to take greater responsibility for who they serve and how much people drink. It is a community problem that needs a community solution. 

I don’t know if these changes will make a difference but we have to allow trialling of new ideas in order to evaluate them. I truly believe that those out there who are saying it’s unfair or penalising the majority due to the actions of the minority are probably only thinking of themselves. There comes a time when you have to remember that we are all part of a community and a country and need to think about what is in the best interests of the country. It is also important that if you disagree with these changes than that’s ok too. But in opposing these changes at least offer a realistic and viable alternative solution.