Getting tough on bad behaviour







Members of the Cobar Liquor Accord are concerned with the rise in incidents of bad behaviour in local licensed venues.

The matter was discussed when the Accord met last Tuesday.

Cobar Liquor Accord chair Linda Carter (secretary/manager of the Cobar Services Club) said they’ve seen an increase in a range of incidents including assault, aggressive behaviour, stealing, patrons being intoxicated and/or drug affected and sexual assault at a number of local clubs and pubs.

She said it’s uncertain what’s led to the recent increase—it could be that there’s more things happening in town or the weather is warming up and people are going out more.

“Most incidents are happening when there are other activities on in town, and this reflects badly on the town and how others see it,” she said.

“It is also not always ‘the out of towners’ who are causing the trouble.

“The Accord is concerned leading into the holiday season as this could impact venues’ ability and willingness to hold any functions or remain open late at night.”

She said venues will be looking at increasing their security staff and RSA marshals and some will consider closing early to avoid late night trouble.

Linda said in addition to police arresting and charging offenders and imposing fines, a number of venues have barred and/or banned the troublemakers.

She said a 24 hour flash ban from one venue bars the offender from all local licensed venues (including bottleshops) and is immediately communicated to all other Accord members.

“Depending upon each place’s licence, if you get banned from a venue for more than 24 hours, you can automatically be banned from others as well. For example, it’s a condition of our licence that you’ll get a one month ban.”

Depending upon the crime, patrons can also get a life ban for a violent assault on an ambulance officer or a police officer.

Linda said all venues are currently refreshing their staff training on responsible service of alcohol and making sure staff are aware of what their responsibilities are.

“Getting a barring now will mean you won’t be celebrating in a Cobar pub or club until 2024,” Linda warned.

“So be mindful of this before you go out as it may be your last time out for a while.”