By James Atkinson
Licensed venues can feel confident of their rights to choose who enters their establishments after a patron lost his second set of legal proceedings against a Sydney nightclub, the venue’s legal representative has told TheShout.
Sportswriter and broadcaster Richard Sleeman last year launched separate defamation and anti-discrimination proceedings against the operators of Sydney's Palms on Oxford nightclub after being excluded from the venue.
After Palms won the defamation case in June, the nightclub has now beaten the discrimination proceedings, on the basis that Sleeman’s claim he was excluded from the club on the basis of his age was based upon an assumption or mere speculation rather than any specific evidence of age discrimination.
“Unfortunately for our clients, they were required to spend a substantial amount of money to defend this allegation without receiving an order as to their legal costs,” Sylvester & Browne Lawyers principal David Sylvester, who represented Palms, told TheShout.
“At this stage, our clients are still deciding whether they will appeal the decision in relation to costs.”
Sylvester said the decision remains important for all licensed venues operating in both NSW and Australia generally.
“Provided that venues engage in appropriate and responsible vetting procedures in relation to patrons and potential patrons (including appropriate recording of events in Incident Registers), then they should feel confident that they are adhering to their responsibilities under both the Liquor and Anti-Discrimination Acts."