Mike Baird Accused Of Using Misleading Stats In Lockouts Defence

10 February 2016 | 3:28 pm | Staff Writer

As more claim Premier deleted social media comments.

It probably hasn't been the breeziest 24 hours for NSW Premier Mike Baird who has been slammed by critics, musicians and locals after defending the controversial lockout laws in an online statement yesterday and it isn't getting any easier today either, as the politician has been accused of using misleading statistics in his defence of the legislation.

Director of the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and Research, Don Weatherburn, has refuted claims made by Baird that alcohol-related violence has dropped by 60% in Kings Cross and almost 43% in the CBD. 

"The problem with that is assaults have been coming down in NSW since 2008, so you had this pre-existing downward trend," Weatherburn said on Sydney radio station ABC 702.

"What the lockout laws did was accelerate the existing downward trend, so it fell even faster than before."

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Weatherburn goes on to say that the only reason statistics have fallen in Kings Cross is because majority of people don't venture out to that area anymore.

"The people that used to go to Kings Cross at one or three o'clock in the morning have simply scattered to wherever they came from, and they're not bumping into the people they would have had a fight with," Weatherburn said.

"Kings Cross tended to attract people who liked to drink a lot and liked to fight when they drank.

"Now they don't run into people like themselves as much."

Weatherburn also claimed that any talk of the violence moving out to areas outside of the 'lockout zones' is unfounded. 

"We don't see any evidence of that. In the early part of the evaluation we saw a brief increase around Darling Harbour, near the casino," he said.

"People have talked endlessly of an increase of assaults in Newtown; we don't see any evidence whatsoever of that.

"I have a suspicion that what people are getting confused about is the usual seasonal increase in violence in summer months."

Meanwhile, the Premier has been accused of deleting social media comments from the statement he posted to his Facebook yesterday.


The cull continues >> Mike Baird Comments are going down...

Posted by Frank Cotela on Tuesday, 9 February 2016

Many users have claimed that the number of comments on the page have decreased, however speaking to news.com.au, Baird's social media manager denied the claims, saying, "It is absolutely not true we are deleting posts. Not one single post. Facebook’s profanity filter may be hiding some, but zero manual deletes. We would normally delete abusive or threatening posts but we have let this thread run totally free.

"One thing I have observed today... Some ‘counts’ of comments include only the original comment while on other platforms (iPad for example) it seems to also count replies to comments in the tally. When news orgs embed the post it shows a higher tally too. But it’s a Facebook discrepancy, nothing on our end."

One user, Ebony Hart, has claimed that three of her own personal comments have been deleted, after she shared a link to a petition campaigning against the lockout laws. 

Earlier today, Aussie DJ Alison Wonderland released her own statement regarding Baird's comments today saying, "our beloved Sydney's reputation has taken a fucking battering", while other artists including Flight Facilities and Nina Las Vegas slammed his response yesterday.