The Queensland government is due to introduce mandatory ID scanning in all ‘Safe Night Precincts’, including Brisbane CBD, Broadbeach CBD, Fortitude Valley, Ispwich CBD, Mackay CBD, Surfers Paradise CBD and parts of the Sunshine Coast, in the middle of this year.
But entertainment industry professionals are calling for the introduction of the scanners to be pushed back to mid-2018 at least.
The scanners are intended to keep punters who are banned from one venue (for being too pissed, for example, or for antisocial behaviour) from simply leaving and entering another venue.
However, RSA Liquor Professionals director Russell Steele is calling mandatory ID scanning an unnecessary invasion of privacy in order to keep out a minuscule number of system rorters – in his words, “between three and 21 patrons” trying to sneak into venues in any ten-day period. He told the Brisbane Times:
“In order to manage these bans, licensees are being forced to scan IDs and invade the privacy of 20,000+ patrons. It is policy overreach to say the least.”
It appears that the Queensland government is trying to use the mandatory ID scanners as another way to improve safety in entertainment precincts, after the 1am lockout laws were scrapped.
Of course, the argument is that punters blocked from entering venues in the Safe Night Precincts will simply take their drunk/boorish selves to the suburbs and continue to wreak havoc, while the rest of us have our names and photos stored for a month after every quick trip to the pub down the road from work after 10pm, whether we’re keen on that or not.
At least if the introduction is pushed back by twelve months, lobbying groups might have the same opportunity to change the government’s mind that they did when getting the 1am lockout binned.
I wouldn’t hold your breath, though; it seems as if Queensland is well on its way to joining Sydney in the no-fun-after-bedtime naughty corner.
Source: Brisbane Times.
Image: Instagram / @gpobrisbane.