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Lessons from Queensland on alcohol, violence and the night-time economy

Peter Miller and colleagues write in The Conversation (12.8.19) the first in a series of articles based on a recently released comprehensive evaluation of the Queensland government’s 2016 policy reforms to tackle alcohol-fuelled violence, and about the implications for alcohol regulation and the night-time economy in Queensland and Australia.

‘Under the “Tackling Alcohol-Fuelled Violence” policy, which among other things introduced statewide restrictions on trading hours, Queensland has recorded reductions in assaults, ambulance attendances and hospital admissions. These reductions represent a substantial cost saving to the Queensland community. At the same time, tourism and the number of liquor licences have continued to grow in many areas.

‘Despite this, levels of alcohol-related harm still remain too high, which calls for further effort.

‘In this article we describe the report findings from “archival” data – data collected by government services. The next three articles will:

  • describe the data from patron interviews, highlighting levels of intoxication and harm;
  • highlight the unwanted sexual attention reported by patrons; and
  • explore the impact on live music.

The Queensland government has provided an interim response to the report’s 38 recommendations. Community consultation will continue to the end of 2019.’

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