A Maitland campaign to stop animal-like behaviour from some hotel patrons has been taken to the next level with an injection of funds from the State Government and a plan to reduce alcohol-related harm.
Maitland Liquor Accord has been named one of 10 successful applicants for the NSW Government's Liquor Accords Grants Program which supports local initiatives to boost public safety.
The news comes just four weeks after The Belmore Hotel was named on the NSW Liquor and Gaming Authority's latest violent venues list.
The inner city hotel recorded 12 incidents over a 12 month period.
"We need to enforce that anti-social behaviour will not be tolerated in and around all our venues in the Maitland Area, therefore we will stand as a united group of licensed venues thanks to the Maitland Liquor Accord," said Accord chairman Nicholas Quinn.
The Accord will start its 'Safe Nights Out - Stop a Good Night Turning Feral' peer behaviour campaign with the $8775 it will receive from the NSW Government.
"We hope to re-stimulate this campaign within the community, creating awareness of one's accountability when out and about in the community enjoying a night out," Mr Quinn said.
The campaign was developed with the support of Maitland City Council, in response to market research undertaken to guide the Accord on night life community safety projects.
"Yes, licensed venues do everything they can to create a safe and comfortable environment for people to visit, but we can always do more," Mr Quinn said. "We also want the individuals in our community to do their part and look out for one another."
Mr Quinn said Maitland was selected for the government funding because the State saw merit in what the Accord was trying to achieve on a local level.
"We are a large area which can really create a positive impact with this initiative," Mr Quinn said.
"As a whole, licensing and police are very happy with the level of anti-social behaviour in venues but we can always focus on being better.
"We work really closely with all law-enforcement teams to ensure licensed venues are doing their part and we will continue to do more.
"We also have to thank Alison Marshall from Maitland City Council for her efforts in assisting with this initiative."
Mr Quinn said the money will be used to help the Accord reprint the Safer Nights Out marketing messaging and promotional materials as well as updating or creating digital platforms including websites, socials, along with supplying in-house marketing for hotels.
Liquor & Gaming NSW executive director Natasha Mann said the Maitland initiative is a great example of how Liquor Accords can help support their local communities to remain safe and free from alcohol related harm.
"Liquor Accords play a key role in the NSW Government's approach to the regulation of alcohol," Ms Mann said.
"This project can make a real difference in ensuring patrons of licensed venues get home safety after a night out."
The one-off Liquor Accords Grants Program was designed to deliver innovative initiatives that improve public safety and amenity in licensed premises and other public and private spaces.
The NSW Government committed $100,000 to the Liquor Accords Grants program - 10 Liquor Accords across the State were successful in their applications for grants.
If you are not yet a member of the Local Liquor Accord and you would like to be involved - please get in contact via firstname.lastname@example.org