NSW Labor Shadow Minister for Music and the Night Time Economy, John Graham, has welcomed a Joint Select Committee report on Sydney’s night time economy that found that lockout laws have had a negligible effect in preventing violence.

However he has doubled down on retaining the lockout laws on Kings Cross.

“Kings Cross … cannot be allowed to return to how it was. It will remain heavily regulated,” Graham said, in a statement released earlier today.

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New research submitted to the Joint Select Committee inquiry from the Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research and the University of Sydney shows that non-domestic assaults fell by just 4% in the CBD under the lockout laws.

This is within the margin of error, and less than the fall in pedestrian traffic at night in the city under the lockout laws.

During the same period, non-domestic assaults have jumped by 18.8% in nearby CBD suburbs, and by 30% in Newtown, Bondi Beach, Coogee and Double Bay.

“On the lockouts, Labor said we would be guided by the evidence,” Graham said.

“We accept that the evidence shows that the effect of the lockout laws has diminished over time in the CBD.”

Labor have instead called for a new cumulative “high impact” venue assessment tool to be immediately trialed in Kings Cross.

Of the lockout laws in other parts of the city, Graham said, “any reform of the 2014 laws should be introduced in stages, monitored and tested as it is introduced.”

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