Sydney’s lockout laws may be relaxed following new review

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Sydney’s lockout laws may be relaxed following new review

By Kate Streader

It’s been five years since Sydney’s controversial lockout laws came into effect, in which time the number of non-domestic violent assaults in Kings Cross and Sydney’s CBD have declined. This is all according to New South Wales Premier Gladys Berejiklian, who now looks to review lockout restrictions as part of a major review of Sydney’s night-time economy.

A cross-party parliamentary committee will consult with police, health workers and members of the live music and entertainment industries before reporting to the NSW State Parliament by September. The review will consider measures needed to maintain community safety while enhancing Sydney’s night-time economy, which is likely to see the strict laws relaxed.

“After five years of operation, it makes sense for us to now take stock and examine whether any further changes should be made,” said Berejiklian in a statement.

“During this period, we have also worked to relax certain aspects of the laws such as extending trading hours for bars and clubs for major events, and making it easier for small bars, restaurants and cafes to start up and operate.”

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore welcomed the news in a thread of tweets this morning which described the laws as having taken “a sledgehammer to Sydney’s nightlife”. Moore also suggested alternative measures to ensure the safety of the community, such as introducing 24-hour public transport on Friday and Saturday nights.

The review comes months after the mass Don’t Kill Live Music protest in Sydney spurred by the NSW State Government’s new licensing scheme for music festivals.