According to recently released annual police statistics, Brisbane’s entertainment precincts have delivered the lowest assault rates in the state of Queensland, marking a four percent decrease on reported incidences last year.
Three Safe Night Precincts in Brisbane have experienced significant decreases in total assaults of 15.6 percent in the Fortitude Valley precinct, 18.4 percent in the CBD, and 23.8 percent in Caxton St.
Nick Braban, secretary of industry group, Our Nightlife Queensland – a body representing hospitality workers and small business owners in the state – says that these results could not have been achieved without engagement from police, local business and community stakeholders.
Braban says that the results indicate that the current locally supported policies to curb violence in the city of Brisbane are working effectively, and that the proposed introduction of Sydney-style lockout laws by the state government would impact the profitability of businesses rather than further reduce assault levels.
“This flies in the face of all available evidence coming out of areas like Fortitude Valley, the CBD and Caxton St that issues around violence are steadily declining,” says Braban.
“Assault rates this low are still not being seen in places like Sydney and Newcastle, despite harsh trading hour restrictions. We have got it right in Queensland and we should keep doing what has worked for our state over the past 10 years.”
Braban says that the Group wants to work with the government in tackling this issue, but believes that lockout laws are not the answer.
“We want to work together on this important issue, safety is our number one priority too. But shutting down the industry, costing thousands of jobs, is not the answer,” says Braban.
“There are a range of options the government could consider that would help achieve the outcomes they want, while also protecting the jobs of tens of thousands of people who work in the industry.”