Over 20 venues and bars across NSW will switch off their music at midnight this Saturday in a resounding F-U to the liberal government’s shitkicker policies about live music and events across the whole (nanny) state.
From their bid to wipe out music festivals and all-ages events in an attempt to reduce drug deaths (while refusing to consider trialling harm reduction measures like pill-testing) to their controversial sniffer dog plan — which has seen hundreds of innocent ticket-holding punters booted from music festivals this year despite no traces of drugs being found on them — the Berejiklian regime’s “damaging” policies have got live music advocates saying “enough is enough”.
Chief amongst their list of gripes is the government’s insidious lockout laws, which have spelled widespread catastrophe for live music culture across the entire city.
“There has been a net loss of 175 venues since the lockout laws were introduced, and the recent scapegoating of music festivals has shown the NSW Government is not going to stop until they destroy all the fun in NSW,” says Tyson Koh from the Keep Sydney Open political party.
Darlinghurst Business Partnership Chairperson Stephan Gyory adds: “We have seen a massive decline in economic and job growth in Darlinghurst and surrounding suburbs which can be directly correlated to the lockout laws and anti-competitive policies of the NSW Government”.
A bunch of beloved Sydney venues will be participating in this weekend’s protest, including Oxford Art Factory, whose owner Mark Gerber comments: “Music venues are vital for any creative city and we think music policy should be in people’s minds come election time”.
David Abram, owner of another participating venue, Freda’s in Chippendale, adds: “It’s more than just about music. We also stage art exhibitions, spoken word nights, talks and markets. Venues provide an essential service to many Sydney communities and need to be valued higher than they currently are.”
Their protest marks 100 days until the NSW election.