- Monday 25 January 2016
Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson and Queensland Police Sunshine Coast District Superintendent Darryl Johnson are calling on the community to look after their mates and act responsibly this Australia Day.
Mayor Jamieson said mateship was a cornerstone of the Australian culture and Australia Day provided the perfect opportunity to reflect on those values and live up to our reputation.
“Australia Day is a day to celebrate the birth of our nation and recognise how fortunate we are to live in the lucky country and, indeed, here on the Sunshine Coast,” Mayor Jamieson said.
“We take the opportunity to reflect on the freedoms we enjoy and the respect we have for one another, given the international fabric of our community.
“And one of the greatest values I ask our community to embrace – not only on Australia Day but throughout the year - is patience, individually and with one another
“So we encourage our community to enjoy their celebrations and have a great time with their family and friends and the community.
“Look out for your mates and have a word to them and get them home safely if they appear to be drinking too much alcohol, or becoming disrespectful towards others.”
Sunshine Coast Police District Superintendent Darryl Johnson said Australia Day was a day for our community to enjoy and celebrate our history and our nation.
“However Queensland Police is encouraging members of the community to enjoy and celebrate the occasion in a safe and respectful manner,” Superintendent Johnson said.
“Sadly, in past years around our country, we have seen drunken violence and anti-social behaviour.
“This is un-Australian and unfortunately the Sunshine Coast has been exposed to this type of behaviour over previous years.
“Generally, this is perpetrated by small groups of persons who ruin the experience for the vast majority of people whose only wish is to enjoy the day safely and peaceably.”
In 2015, police arrested 56 people on Australia Day on the Sunshine Coast for public order and traffic related offences.
‘We were extremely impressed with the behaviour of our community on New Year’s Eve and we are hoping for more of the same for Australia Day,” Superintendent Johnson said.
“There will be a significant police presence across the Sunshine Coast where you will see uniform police, however we will have plain clothes police also patrolling our more populated areas to ensure any anti-social behaviour is identified early.
“The community as a whole does not accept anti-social behaviour, and police will be cracking down on this type of conduct from the outset of the operation.
“The message police want to relay is to enjoy and celebrate the day responsibly, be considerate of others, but if you misbehave and commit offences you can expect police attention.”
Tips for a safe Australia Day:
- If you are drinking, don’t let your level of intoxication make you a perpetrator or a victim of crime.
- Do not consume alcohol in a public place – police can issue on the spot fines for this offence.
- Make appropriate transport plans, don’t drink and drive and risk your family and friends’ lives.
- Stay safe and watch your mates, if you find yourself in a threatening situation – walk away.
- Drive to the appropriate road conditions.
- If you find yourself in a threatening situation or see a crime in progress call triple zero.
- If you observe suspicious behaviour report it to police through Policelink on 131 444.
- If you have information that would assist in solving a crime call Crime Stoppers on 1800 333 000.