ACT Policing will have a highly visible presence at the Australia Day Live concert tomorrow (Wednesday, January 25) to ensure a trouble-free event.
As in previous years, ACT Policing will be focusing on identifying alcohol-affected juveniles.
The free concert will be held on the lawns of Parliament House, at Federation Mall, from 6pm to 10pm.
The Operation Commander for the event, Superintendent Kylie Flower, said that ACT Policing will be working closely with event organisers and security at the event to ensure everyone has a good time.
“One of our priorities, as with every year, is to ensure that families attending Australia Day celebrations will not be subjected to anti-social behaviour, especially the behaviour of young people under the influence of alcohol,” Superintendent Flower said.
The operational strategy around the event will involve the early detection and interruption of underage drinking in the areas surrounding Parliament House.
Proactive patrols will operate around Parliament House from midday on Wednesday (January 25) and will include known locations where young people consume alcohol.
“Our goal is to prevent young people becoming intoxicated prior to the event. If you’re caught drinking and you’re underage then chances are you will not even see the concert,” Superintendent Flower said.
“We want to make it clear that underage drinking is also the responsibility of the parents and as such it is a requirement that all young people taken into police custody have to be collected by a parent or guardian,” Superintendent Flower said.
Last year 71 juveniles were taken in to police custody for underage drinking offences, compared to 10 for 2010.
A further four young people were apprehended for possession of cannabis, one in possession of a knife. Five adults were taken into protective custody due to their level of intoxication.
During Australia Day events last year (Wednesday, January 26) at Commonwealth Place, ACT Policing apprehended six juveniles for alcohol-related incidents, and a further five children were taken into protective custody due to lack of appropriate supervision.
This year police will be out in force with dedicated police for crowd control, General Duties, and traffic management and will be taking specific steps, such as pre-event patrols and establishing a detention area for juveniles at the City Police Station, to deal with intoxicated youths.