Liquor Authority Shuts down Venue due to Responsible Service of Alcohol (RSA) Breaches
The Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority in Newcastle shut down the Silk Hotel because of failure to comply with Responsible Service of Alcohol Laws.
Responsible alcohol service involves understanding that good times must be balanced by good judgment. The consequences of serving unduly intoxicated patrons can go beyond fines for licensees and their staff, people can be hurt and lives can be lost if responsible service of alcohol rules are not followed.
But failing to enforce RSA laws can also result in inconvenient and costly consequences as the Silk Hotel discovered just hours before thousands of revelers converged on the city for the Fat as Butter music festival.
The Silk Hotel was forced to close its doors for trade for 72 hours after police became concerned that it was the source of a number of alcohol fuelled incidents.
The weekend before the shut-down there were a number of incidents which raised concern with police. A number of police officers were hurt and 8 men were arrested as a result of the incidents.
In addition to being closed for 72 hours during one of Newcastle’s busiest weekends, the hotel will have to comply with a number of other requirements including additional CCTV requirements and mobile security patrols.
The following excerpt from an article on Abc.net.au explains further:
The Silk Hotel in Hunter Street has been shut down until 5pm (AEDT) on Monday by the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority.
It follows an application by the Newcastle Local Area Command about the hotel’s compliance with its licence conditions and recent incidents involving intoxication, violent conduct and underage patrons.
Police were also concerned that the hotel would pose a significant public risk this weekend given the large number of young people in Newcastle for Fat as Butter.
The Authority says the 72-hour closure order follows the imposition of extra weekend conditions on the Silk Hotel’s licence including extra CCTV requirements, mobile security patrols and ID scanning of patrons.
Superintendent John Gralton of the Newcastle police said the shutdown was welcomed and sent the right message that Newcastle will not “tolerate” this kind of behaviour. As he explained the city’s culture is changing for the better and these types of incidents have become unacceptable as they do not fit in with this changing culture.
Although most of Newcastle’s hotels were doing the right thing, some were still the source of discord and violence, stemming from the failure to enforce Responsible Service of Alcohol rules as it mandated by law.
The article went on to explain:
Superintendent Gralton says the incident at the weekend was unsavoury and completely unacceptable, and remains under investigation.
“This is just one of a number of incidents that have occurred at the hotel over some time now, requiring police to respond each time, which leant weight to the application for short-term closure,” he said.
“The decision reinforces the strong stance taken by police, and we acknowledge the prompt response and decision made by the Independent Liquor and Gaming Authority.”