Twenty-nine people have been arrested this weekend in the ACT as part of Operation Unite, the stand against alcohol misuse, violence and anti-social behaviour.
Of the arrests made, 24 people were taken into police custody for being intoxicated and disorderly.
These results represent a 36 per cent decrease from last year’s Operation Unite in the ACT when 45 people were arrested including 33 for being intoxicated and disorderly. However, this decrease may be attributed to the colder weather and the fact that last year the results were recorded in the lead-up to Christmas.
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Operation Commander Superintendent Mick Calatzis said the issue of alcohol related violence is not solely centered around youth.
“While young people in their late teens and early 20s represent a large number of people who go out and drink on the weekends, this is a problem we are seeing right across a range of ages. We are seeing people of all ages consuming large amounts of alcohol and causing trouble while they are intoxicated. This is not just a problem isolated to any one age group and we need to change the behaviour of the entire community,” Superintendent Calatzis said.
Acting Chief Police Officer for the ACT Bruce Hill said that while Operation Unite has now ended the community should realise that police will continue to focus on this issue beyond this weekend.
“Alcohol misuse, violence and anti-social behaviour is a problem that affects the entire community – it is a cultural issue and, as Operation Unite demonstrates, we are seeing the same problems in every state, territory and region of Australia and New Zealand,” A/CPO Hill said.
“We are uniting to tackle this issue because ‘enough is enough’ – binge drinking in public places has quickly become a dangerous culture and we need to stop this sort of behaviour.
“As we approach the warmer months, police will continue to have a highly visible presence in all entertainment precincts across the ACT. I urge all Canberrans to enjoy this time but to do so safely and sensibly,” A/CPO Hill said.
Australian and New Zealand will again come together for Operation Unite in December.