Lockout laws won by one vote, but will save lives: Lynham

QUEENSLAND'S new lockout laws came down to one vote.

At about 2am on Thursday, Labor and Katter's Australian Party MPs voted to approve the laws as the LNP and independent Billy Gordon voted against them.

From July 1, 2016 last drinks will be at 2am - except in designated entertainment precincts where venues can apply for last drinks at 3am if they agree to a lockout from 1am.

For Mines Minister Dr Anthony Lynham who entered politics to reduce alcohol-fuelled violence, the bill's passing was a significant moment.

"This bill is more important, more powerful than any operation that I could ever do," he said.

"It is powerful because it prevents harm. By my being here, if I have stopped 25 of our kids getting to the operating table it is far better than me operating on 100 of our kids. This bill stops injury and death."

The bill has not been universally welcomed though - shadow attorney-general Ian Walker said the former LNP government had implemented more wide-ranging policies.

"We have significant concerns about not only the lack of evidence for this measure but also the gaps and inconsistencies within this legislation," he said.

"The government seems to be saying that alcohol is the root cause of all evil, yet gambling and other forms of entertainment have been carved out of this legislation with their own set of rules and regulations."

Despite the LNP's opposition, the bill has found support from Clubs Queensland and the Queensland Law Society.

QLS president Bill Potts said he hoped the legislation would stop more people dying on nights out.

"This is a big step towards ending the carnage on our streets, and the society welcomes this important legislation," he said.

Clubs Queensland chief Doug Flockhart said patrons' safety was vital to clubs remaining successful.

"Clubs Queensland welcomes the passage of this bill to help reduce violent behaviour across Queensland communities, whilst ensuring the late night economy remains vibrant and safe for all to enjoy."

The laws will be independently reviewed in July, 2018. - APN NEWSDESK



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