As of July 1 2016 there will be no more tequila shots after midnight as we are conscripted into our new Saturday night curfew. Last drinks will be served at 2am, and last call at 3am. Not happy Jan.
Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk claims that these laws will make Queensland safer and save lives.
“The evidence is clear: reduced trading hours leads to reduced violence, and that’s what this Bill delivers,” Palaszczuk said.
And here is why I disagree.
The hours may change, but the drinking culture will roll on regardless. Oh Hello has already announced the opening of a new venue that will run from 12pm – 12am, and not to mention the rising popularity of Sunday seshs in the last few years.
Many are concerned about the effect this will have on the nightlife industry – disrupting venues, holding work hostage from hospitality workers, and restricting music performances. This is all true – but we will adjust whether these laws are enforced or not.
Welcome to Australia, beer is literally in the country bio. Going to bars is how we socialise, discover new bands, and try new craft creations. So as if we are ever going to stop. Unfortunately, violence does come with the territory. But like I said, all that these laws are going to change is the hours in which this happens.
Violence will just occur in daylight. Not only that – by removing people from security-protected venues, we are encouraging them to stay at home. There is no bouncer to break up a fight in a domestic setting, so how is having uncontrolled parties in the suburbs a better alternative than going to the valley?
The progress reports of this new Bill will inevitably argue that violence in the targeted areas has decreased. This will be the case because nobody will actually be out! Instead, these laws will encourage drinking in unchecked domestic settings, and new opening hours for bars and clubs.
Other strategies need to be enforced to tackle alcohol-fuelled violence. These could be tougher penalties, fines, education – whatever. But telling us when we can and can’t drink outside won’t do anything because we will find other ways.