Labor Welcomes Fall In Sydney CBD Assaults – But Warns Of Rising Drug Offences, Domestic Violence And Disproportionate Crime In Regional NSW
April 16, 2015
The NSW Labor Opposition has welcomed the drop in assaults in the Sydney CBD reported in today’s BOCSAR report – but expressed concern about the rise in drug-related crime and incidence of domestic violence over the past five years.
Shadow Minister for Police Jodi McKay said the 12.7 per cent reduction in assaults in the Sydney CBD vindicated Labor’s tough stance against alcohol-related violence in 2013 – one which forced the then O’Farrell Government to act.
“There must be no backward step on tough laws against alcohol related violence in the Sydney CBD and Kings Cross,” Ms McKay said.
“It was Labor that demanded the Government recall Parliament at the start of 2014 to introduce compulsory lockouts and last drinks restrictions.
“The drop in alcohol-related assaults and hospitalisations is encouraging – and Labor will guard against this Government taking any backward steps.
“Everyone must be able to enjoy a fun and safe night out in Sydney. Policy in this area must be informed by the true experts – our nurses, paramedics and police – not the liquor lobby.”
As communities across NSW – particularly in regional and coastal areas – battle the ice epidemic, Ms McKay expressed concern about the dramatic rise in drug-related offences.
According to the report published today – between January 2013 and December 2014
Dealing/Trafficking of amphetamines is up 27.6 per cent
Possession and/or use of amphetamines is up 36.3 per cent
Possession and/or use of cocaine is up 31.2 per cent
Possession and/or use of cannabis is up 16.7 per cent
Possession and/or use of narcotics is up 14.6 per cent
Domestic violence related assaults across NSW have risen by 2.7 per cent over the past five years. Last year, there were 29,070 recorded cases of domestic violence in NSW, up from 28,423 in 2013.
The report (see p.26-27) shows regional areas such as the Moree Plains, Walgett, Tenterfield, Wellington, Dubbo, Coonamble and Kempsey significantly outpacing state crime rates.
“From the dramatic rise in drug-related crime to domestic violence, this report shows there is no room for complacency,” Ms Mckay said.
“Unemployment in the Hunter Valley, the Murray, the Northern Rivers, the Mid North Coast and the Central West is in double digits – or very close to it. Providing people in these communities with genuine hope and economic opportunity is one of the best ways the State can reduce crime – and the Baird Government must not forget regional NSW.”