School leavers and their parents and guardians are being urged to be aware of their rights and obligations this Schoolies (16 – 23 November 2019).
Attorney-General and Minister for Justice Yvette D’Ath said playing by the rules was essential to keep Schoolies safe.
“School leavers should be able to celebrate and enjoy themselves at Schoolies without any fear of harm or danger,” Mrs D’Ath said.
“That’s why officers from the Office of Liquor and Gaming Regulation (OLGR) and Office of Fair Trading (OFT) will be working closely with the Queensland Police to maintain safety in Airlie Beach and on the Gold and Sunshine Coasts.
“They’ll be on the lookout for underage drinkers and adults supplying alcohol to minors, and ensuring the compliance of accommodation providers, security officers, and crowd controllers.
“If everyone plays by the rules, we can ensure a safe Schoolies in 2019.”
Mrs D’Ath said last year 108 minors at Schoolies received on-the-spot fines for being Under 18 and in possession of, or consuming, alcohol in a public place.
“This year, the on-the-spot fine for the minor has increased to $400 and the potential outcome of an adult irresponsibly supplying liquor to a minor in a private place is up to $10,676,” she said.
“Supplying alcohol to minors or your own children this Schoolies is not only illegal – it can also have life-changing consequences through injury or sexual assault.”
Mrs D’Ath said liquor licensees and their staff in Schoolies hot spots should be extra vigilant when it comes to persons under 18 years of age at their venue.
“Compliance officers will be keeping a close eye on licensed venues to ensure staff don’t allow underage drinking, and non-exempt minors on licensed premises,” Mrs D’Ath said.
“There’s also an increased risk of school leavers attempting to access licensed venues with a fake ID, or an ID that does not belong to them.
“Staff and security personnel need to be extra vigilant when checking IDs and confiscate any they believe to be fake, or belonging to someone else.”
The OFT is also undertaking educational activities in the lead up to Schoolies 2019, ensuring accommodation providers, security officers and crowd controllers are aware of their responsibilities under the law.
Once Schoolies commences OFT inspectors will be conducting compliance checks to ensure the laws are being complied with.
“Accommodation and booking service providers are reminded that they must honour promises made at the time of booking and must not apply different house rules to Schoolies,” Mrs D’Ath said.
“For example, you can only impose specific restrictions on any visiting guests, apply a curfew, or prohibit glass jars and bottles in the rooms, if these conditions were made clear before the booking was made.
“We advise parents and school-leavers to be aware of their consumer rights and responsibilities, to review the terms and conditions of their contracts and stick to the house rules as this will ensure everyone has the best Schoolies experience.
“Our advice to accommodation providers is if you are employing security guards or crowd controllers, to use the free search function on the OFT website to ensure they’re appropriately licensed for the duties and functions you require of them.”