Thousands of protesters have criticized and demonstrated against the NSW government’s lockout laws while supporting Keep Sydney Open campaign.
Almost 10,000 people joined the protest in the city, including celebrities like Jimmy Barnes, Hayley Mary and Urthboy. Barnes released a video in which he said that the lockout laws are not effective enough, and hence, should be withdrawn.
In a conversation with a media outlet, Keep Sydney Open Tyson Koh said that he was quite satisfied to see the number of people who have come forward to support the rally. “This is our second rally now, our first one was back in February,” Koh said. “We proved then that this is an issue that the people of Sydney were going to fight for and with today’s showing of 10,000 people, we’re showing the same thing eight months later.”
The state government said that it would think about the lifting of the 1:30 am lockouts, as demanded by demonstrators and respond accordingly by the end of 2016.
The implementation of the lockout laws has affected several businesses and professionals negatively including Barnes. He said that he used to conduct concerts in live venues in Sydney but the number of performances had reduced 40 percent since the lockout laws were implemented.
Koh told The Guardian Australia that the protest has been great as of now. He added that the Keep Syndey Open campaign was not only a protest against the deterioration in the quality of Sydney’s nightlife but it was also an attempt to introduce the city to the “best version of itself”.
An independent review of NSW’s lockout laws was released in September, revealing that there was a need to reconsider the lockout times, including extended hours for bottle shops. The controversial law was introduced in 2014 but has been facing significant criticism since them, including the scheduling of two Keep Sydney Open rallies.