Recently as part of my local government work I've been thinking about and discussing what Auckland's "Local Alcohol Policy" might look like. This is a new initiative, under legislation that came into effect in late 2013, which means each local council can determine a Local Alcohol Policy for their community which determines hours of operation, location, density, and additional conditions.
One of the areas of debate that came up in a workshop I was at on Friday was the usefulness, or otherwise of one way doors. The concept is that after a certain time (say 1am) you would have to stay in the venue you are in until the cut off time for alcohol purchase (say 3am). If you left a venue after the one way door closed, so to speak, you would not be able to get into another one.
Now on the one hand this will minimise the bar hopping that happens when people are getting drunker towards the end of the night, hopefully minimise street scuffles, and mean that when people are at their drunkest they are in a stable environment.
But what if the venue you are in when the one way door shuts isn't safe? Or becomes unsafe? What if you are harassed, assaulted, have your drink spiked, abused? If you leave that is the end of your night. If you stay you remain at risk. Especially if the venue isn't interested in looking out for you.
Feedback most welcome in comments, thanks :)