NEWCASTLE’S “last drinks” and “lockout” laws have led to a “significant and sustained” 31 per cent reduction in serious alcohol-related facial injury assault cases at John Hunter Hospital, a Hunter research team has found.
Serious facial injury assaults treated at the hospital increased at a rate of 14 per cent per year from 2003 to 2008 before the ‘Newcastle solution’ to violent incidents in the CBD was enacted, a report led by University of Newcastle conjoint professor and maxillofacial surgeon Gary Hoffman said.
The facial injury assault figure decreased at a rate of 21 per cent per year after 2008, leading to a 31 per cent relative reduction, the report Liquor legislation, last drinks and lockouts: the Newcastle solution said.
The study tested the “regional implementation” of laws to limit alcohol access on facial injury assault cases at John Hunter Hospital. It found the downward assault trend applied to all males aged 18-35.
“The introduction of ‘last drinks’ and ‘lockout’ legislation has led to a significant and sustained reduction in assaultive alcohol-related facial injury in Newcastle,” the study found.