Sad times have come for the nightcrawlers and club owners of Queensland, Australia looking to have a good time or increase their business. Yesterday, new lockout laws were passed in the Australian state in order to combat “alcohol-fueled violence” that has plagued nightlife scene.
What these lockout laws do when fully implemented is far more outrageous than they appear to sound. To start things off, last call will be regulated to 3am in certain areas known as “Safe Night Precincts.” Otherwise, all other establishments that are not confined within the parameters of the fifteen buzzkill zones will be limited to serving alcohol until 2 in the morning that will take effect July 1st of this year. On top of all this, people with drug-related convictions will be barred from Safe Night Precincts and the lockout laws will set last call back to 1am February 1st of next year.
What allowed these lockout laws to come to life was a push from the Labor Party in Queensland who wanted to pass these laws since last year. With cross-bench support from the Katter Party and an Independent, the Labor Party was able to finally achieve their “solution” to alcohol-related crime. In return, the Katter Party had legislation passed to increase funding for both unemployment and mental health programs in Queensland.
The tomfoolery of these lockout laws began to take foot when the city of Sydney decided to tinker with them nearly two years ago. The downtown area known as Kings Cross went from being the epicenter of Sydney nightlife and transformed into abandoned buildings and empty sidewalks. But even though Queensland can see what ruin lies ahead from watching the grueling death of Kings Cross a state over, there may be nothing the people can do about it for another two years. According to the law, an independent review of the lockout laws won’t happen until July of 2018. As Australia has already witnessed, the time to possibly repeal or adjust the law might be two years too late and the evening entertainment businesses of Queensland will fade away.