The NSW Government has invited anti-lockout activists and other organisations to discuss the future of Sydney’s nightlife.
Community and industry groups and government agencies were invited to participate in three roundtable discussions to develop a safe and vibrant nightlife in Sydney. The first meeting, held today, will aim to identify the components of the lock-out laws impacting on Sydney’s night-time economy and focus on the problems that need to be solved.
Keep Sydney Open, the organisers behind a 15,000-strong protest earlier this year, is one of the groups invited to the meeting. “Let’s talk,” the organisation wrote on its Facebook page the day the meetings were announced.
Keep Sydney Open has unfavourably compared Sydney with cities overseas, such as London: “While Sydney is taking six months to review the merits of dismantling nightlife and small businesses, the conservative Mayor of London Boris Johnson launched a six-month investigation into protecting their after-dark economy,” the group said.
Deputy Premier and Minister for Justice and Police Troy Grant said that this is a chance for stakeholders of Sydney nightlife to work together for a safe and vibrant nightlife.
“This is an exciting chance for roundtable participants to work together to identify the issues and develop solutions that recognise the opportunities for our great city into the future,” Mr Grant said.
Uber, St Vincent’s Hospital, NSW Police, Liquor Stores Association and Live Music Office are also invited to the roundtable discussions.
The second meeting will commence on April 28 and the third on May 26. Participants will be asked to come up with workable solutions and agree on an outcome together.
The results of the round-table discussions will be reviewed by former High Court Justice Ian Callinan, who will release his report in August. – Rebecka Davidsson
Photo by Jessica Heckley.