50,000 signatures reached
To: Premier Mike Baird
Keep Sydney Open - Fight Sydney's lockout legislation!
We urge you to remove the lockouts which have damaged business, culture, personal freedom and Sydney's reputation.
The signatories here agree that the city's streets should be safer, however we disagree that the way to do this is by locking people out of music venues.
With the decrease in foot-traffic outstripping the decrease in assaults, we question the success of the lockouts. When one factors in the business closures, job losses and increased crime in neighbouring areas, we wonder if they might in fact be a failure.
We demand smarter solutions — a holistic and lateral approach to preventing assaults which examines transport, CCTV, tougher sentencing, density and diversity of licensed premises, venue management, culture as a placating tool and the tendency towards violence among certain groups of individuals.
The music community and law-abiding citizens are not the right people to punish for assaults on the street. Well-run venues are safe and they make a large contribution to our reputation as one of the world's great entertainment cities.
Safety is a goal shared by everyone. It's important to remember that the main beneficiaries are the very people who wish to go out. We believe that safety and late-night socialising aren’t mutually exclusive. With considered, innovative policies we can achieve a desired outcome together and Keep Sydney Open.
Why is this important?
The NSW Government has introduced new laws that close Sydney’s music clubs to new guests at 1.30am and ban selling alcoholic drinks after 3am.
The 2am lockout in Victoria was cancelled after independent auditor KPMG found it had not helped to address street level violence. The Queensland 3am lockout and 5am closures were shown by the Queensland Auditor-General to be a $10 million failure.
The senseless deaths of two young men in Kings Cross started a poignant and overdue conversation about street safety, but we have lost sight of the facts. A night out in Sydney isn't an orgy of violence, and for an international city of over 4 million people, assaults are not a catastrophic epidemic. The overwhelming majority of people enjoy a fun, incident-free time, and this is a tribute to tighter RSA measures that had already been implemented by venues. This is supported by BOCSAR which found a 37% reduction in assaults from 2007-2012 and a further 26% reduction from 2012-2013 without lockouts. That said, we believe there is still some way to go.
Keep Sydney Open comprises members of the music community including MusicNSW, SLAM, GoodGod Small Club, Oxford Art Factory, The Oxford Hotel, themusic.com.au, inthemix, Freda's and The Music Network. We represent music venues, bands, DJs, performers, promoters, the music media and law-abiding Sydneysiders who wish to enjoy a night out.
Please sign the petition, connect with us on Facebook and Twitter and share among your friends. In doing so you will help us tell the NSW government that we need innovative solutions that consider culture, jobs, business and tourism alongside personal safety and freedom.
We’ll keep making your voice heard until we get safer streets in a global city.