Qld govt rejects bid to curb Casino hours
A recommendation to restrict casino trading hours in Queensland as part of efforts to curb alcohol fuelled violence has been rejected by the state government.
Casinos in the state "already operate under a significant level of scrutiny" and have more security than other venues, the government says, in response to an evaluation of its alcohol-fuelled violence policy.
"The government also considers removal of 24-hour trading hours would be inconsistent with the government's plans for creating a 'new world city' for Brisbane," the response tabled on Wednesday says.
Star Entertainment is at the centre of a major development in Brisbane's Queen's Wharf.
The government's position hasn't shifted from its interim response in 2019, when it said it would look at ways to engage casinos in safe night precinct management and safety.
A recommendation to close all safe night precinct venues at 3.30am was also not supported.
"The Government is not satisfied closing all late-trading venues...at 3.30am, following cessation of the service of alcohol at 3.00am, would strike an appropriate regulatory balance," it said.
Key measures of the government's policy include changing liquor trading hours from 5am to 3am in safe night precincts and mandatory ID scanners for a large number of venues.
"The report shows there's been a 49 per cent drop in the number of serious assaults between 3am and 6am on Friday and Saturday nights across Queensland," Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk said.
"Significantly, there's been a 52 per cent reduction in these assaults in one of the state's most popular precincts - Fortitude Valley."
Speaking in parliament on Wednesday, Ms Palaszczuk reflected on the one-punch death of teenager Cole Miller in 2016.
"It was the very definition of a coward's punch, Cole fell to the ground, he never regained consciousness," Ms Palaszczuk said.
"More than 2000 people gathered in King George Square demanding something be done so no other family suffered such an awful loss...that something was our government's strategy to tackle alcohol fuelled violence."
Mr Miller's brother and sister were at parliament on Wednesday.
"It's always very upsetting to relive these events...however it's also very pleasing to see some positive results from the changes that have come through," Cole's older brother Billy said.
Among the accepted recommendations was working to ensure a list of banned patrons is available to venues operating after midnight.
There will also be an independent review of alcohol and drug safety education in schools and an extra $500,000 in funding to support safe night precinct boards.
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