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Powell Media Release – Stronger police powers ensure Safe Nights Out (8 December 2014)

Partygoers will enjoy safer nights out than ever before this festive season after Glass House police were given more powers to curb alcohol and drug fuelled violence.

Member for Glass House, Andrew Powell said local police could now automatically breathalyse and drug test anyone who commits a serious assault in a public place.

“This is the busiest time of year for our local venues, so it’s more important than ever we keep celebrations as safe as possible,” Mr Powell said.

“By taking evidence at the scene of an offence, police can use the results as evidence in court proceedings, which can lead to stronger penalties for offenders.

“Anyone who goes on to be charged with a serious offence will also be required to complete a Drug and Alcohol Assessment Referral as part of their bail conditions.

“It sends a clear message that dangerous behaviour can have lasting consequences, not just for the victim but the offender also.”

Mr Powell said the $4.5 million Safe Night Out Strategy was already working effectively to clean up key entertainment zones across Queensland.

“In the last two months, police have issued over 1800 banning orders to those who are heavily intoxicated, violent or refuse to leave a venue when requested,” he said.

“Banning orders can last up to three months to ensure troublemakers can’t return for round two.”

Mr Powell said 1200 fines have also been issued by the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation to non-compliant patrons for offences like entering a licensed venue after being refused entry or consuming liquor in a public place.

“This year’s grade 11 and 12 students are also the first to complete compulsory drug and alcohol education under the strategy, just in time for their end of year celebrations,” he said.

“These reforms prove the Newman LNP Government has a strong plan to ensure Queensland is the safest place to enjoy a fun, safe night out.
[ENDS] 08 December 2014


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