Cop’s long night to keep our kids safe

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Queenstown cop Wayne Park has got a long night ahead of him on Saturday.

Queenstown’s youth aid officer, Park will station himself outside the Wakatipu High after-ball party in Frankton to keep 250 youths in check during the wee small hours.

He’ll also be enforcing the liquor ban on under-age drinking outside the site.

“They’ve all been instructed what the law is and that if they’re going to bring alcohol, they’ll be committing an offence if they’re going to walk on the street with it.”

Parents have to accompany students to the site if they bring alcohol.

Park’s been supervising outside for the past nine after-parties and says the booze-fuelled behaviour has got better over the years, thanks to security and parent helpers.

Six security guards will keep things in order inside Saturday’s private party and he’s not expecting any problems, he says.

He disagrees with recent media reports about the perceived local drinking problem – “Queenstown youth are no different from youth anywhere else in the country”.

After-party organiser Matiu Gourlay says a limit of four RTD drinks or six beers will be imposed during the party.
There’ll be three tents – one with music playing, a smokers’ tent – a resource consent requirement – and a “chill-out room” where parents cook a barbecue and serve water.

There’s a “zero policy” on drugs, Gourlay adds.