NSW Cops Seek Curbs on Drinking

Taking a cue from the successful trial in Newcastle, the Police Association is planning to urge the New South Wales Government to introduce a similar ‘Last Drinks’ liquor restrictions across the state.

Police Association Vice-President, Scott Webber says the issue would be raised at their two-day conference on the central coast beginning today. "We don't have to look too far for solutions, we just have to look to Newcastle," he said.

Webber says there were moderate restrictions in regards to 14 licensed premises in Newcastle in March 2008, which had fantastic results. This meant the community of Newcastle could go out, have a great night and not come home in the back of an ambulance, he asserts. In addition, it also meant emergency services workers were not getting assaulted when they were going to work.

Notably, the biennial NSW Police Association conference would double as a stage for doctors, nurses, ambulance staff and front-line police to share their stories of improvements across the city's central business district after the restrictions were brought in at Easter last year. A 30% drop in assaults fuelled by drinking has been witnessed across the city.

While police personnel, doctors and other paramedics would push for reforms under the banner "last drinks" on the opening day today, Premier Kristina Keneally and Opposition leader Barry O'Farrell would be the key speakers tomorrow.