The Greens have a long track record standing up against the lockout laws and over-policing in NSW.
We stand with musicians, creatives, artists, festivals, party-goers, hospo workers, foodies, wine-connoisseurs and people who want to be able to dance all night to 80’s Madonna or Mojo Juju. The Greens want live music to thrive in our city and know the importance of music festivals. And we will do everything we can to make this happen!
We were the only party in parliament who opposed the lockouts when they were introduced.
In the next parliamentary term, Greens MPs for Newtown and Balmain, Jenny Leong and Jamie Parker, will introduce bills to repeal the lockouts and ban sniffer dogs.
We support a harm minimisation approach to drug use which includes state sanctioned pill testing. We oppose punitive regulations that shut down our nightlife and close down festivals.It's beginning to look like NSW has become the biggest party pooper state in the country.
For a government that is supposedly ‘liberal’, and who values individual freedoms, the Berejiklian Government has becoming increasingly interested in regulating people’s private lives.
While the wowserism of this government has provoked outrage, the double standards are breathtaking: at a time when our personal freedoms are being progressively restricted, major corporations are enjoying a golden age – at our expense.
The overregulation of festivals has become the latest in a chain of events where the government has cracked down hard on innocent people on the dance floor. The fun police have been out in force these past few years – first sniffer dogs, then the lockouts, then banning protests and public assembly and now music festivals.
See Greens MPs Jenny Leong and Tamara Smith's media statement on live music here.
Greens Members for Newtown and Ballina have confirmed their support for the Australian Festivals Association’s (AFA) demands on the NSW Government as the internationally renowned Bluesfest threatens to move the festival to Queensland. The Director of Bluesfest has squarely pointed the finger at this government for their actions.
Jenny Leong MP, Member for Newtown
"The Greens absolutely support the AFA’s calls, in fact we consider what they are asking for to be the basic minimum standard for community consultation and evidence-based policy making,” said Jenny Leong, Greens MP for Newtown.
"We’ve seen the Liberals and Nationals impose lockouts, attempt to shut down our city and stop us from dancing - and now they are throwing the same sort of uninformed and outdated views on our festivals and it’s having enormous consequences.
"The Greens were the only party in the NSW Parliament to stand strong and oppose the lockout laws when they were introduced - our position is clear - we oppose the Sydney and CBD lockouts, we support pill-testing and we want a thriving and creative live music scene,” she said.
“We need to stop the over policing of festivals - including banning sniffer dogs - and support our musicians and the music industry in NSW."
Tamara Smith MP, Member for Ballina
“Today’s statements from the Director of the award winning Bluesfest are a real worry, this festival is such an important part of the local economy and our community,” said Tamara Smith, Greens MP for Ballina.
“Regional festivals don't want to suffer the same fate as Sydney when lockouts were introduced and to see a hugely successful Festival in its 30th year, fighting for its existence is shocking.
“This government seems hell bent on dismantling our music industry and closing down cultural events - it’s shameful.
“Bluesfest are just the latest business owners to worry about how to keep the lights on in the face of restrictive and over the top government actions and they are likely not the last."
Jenny Leong MP, Member for Newtown, tabled the petition signed by 10,000+ people in support of Keeping Sydney Safe and Open in 2016 - her speech is available here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zodvK5NVMQ
The NSW Liberal Government, with the support of Labor, has pushed through changes that will weaken the regulation of problem venues in NSW.
The Liquor Amendment (Reviews) Bill 2017 amends the 3 Strikes Scheme, designed to target licensed venues that repeatedly commit serious offences in breach of their liquor licence.Read more
The Greens have today called on the NSW Government to release advice provided to the NSW Government by former High Court Judge Ian Callinan into its 'three strikes' policy, currently subject to proposed legislative changes.
The Liquor Amendment (Reviews) Bill 2017 will be debated in Parliament this week and seeks to transfer strikes from the owner of venues and liquor licence holders to the licensee or manager of the premises. The changes mean venue owners will be able to avoid responsibility for breaches of licence conditions.Read more
On Wednesday 15 March 2017 the Protecting the Vibe public meeting was co-hosted by the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre and Greens Member for Newtown Jenny Leong MP.
It followed on from a 2015 public meeting on the Newtown Vibe, called in response to community concerns around the Sydney lockouts and community safety, and gave the community the opportunity to hear about the work of the Newtown Vibe Roundtable, established after the initial public meeting, and to report in on the current vibe in Newtown.Read more
NSW Greens spokesperson on Night-time Culture and Economy and Member for Newtown Jenny Leong spoke in the Parliament about the local, targeted response to the lockouts that has taken place in Newtown.Read more
NSW Greens spokesperson on Night-time Culture and Economy and Member for Newtown Jenny Leong MP says that the locally-led response taken in Newtown shows that there are real alternatives to blanket lockout laws.
“While the latest BOCSAR statistics on assaults seem to confirm that the community's concern that imposition of the Sydney CBD and Kings Cross lockouts would push violence and anti-social behaviour to nearby suburbs, the specific stats for Newtown are showing that reported assaults have remained stable, even with a significant increase in visitor numbers. Targeted, community-led solutions can have an impact," said Ms Leong.Read more
Newtown is a place known for being welcoming, eclectic, diverse, accepting, respectful, vibrant and fun.
In 2015, the Newtown community came together at a public meeting in response to concerns about safety in the local area, following the implementation of the Sydney CBD and Kings Cross lockouts. The meeting was a joint initiative of the Newtown Neighbourhood Centre, Newtown Precinct Business Association, ACON, and the Office of Jenny Leong MP, Member for Newtown.
As a result of the meeting, a working group known as the Newtown Vibe Roundtable was established, to monitor and respond to safety, planning, transport and amenity issues that impact the Newtown area.
In March 2017 a second community meeting was held, to allow people who live, work or play in and around Newtown to report in on the mood in Newtown now.
While statistics from the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research show that the number of reported assaults in Newtown has remained stable, some locals have reported a change in the mood on the streets.
What are your thoughts on the mood in Newtown? Do you have ideas that will keep our community safe and vibrant?Send feedback
Today I called on the Liberal Government to provide real solutions that lead to a vibrant and safe night-life in our city, and not to displace violence from the city onto the people of Newtown.