POLICE have warned that people who host parties where underage people are drinking without their parents’ permission risk heavy fines and jail time.
Bendigo police’s Sergeant Steve Rainey said people who hosted parties must be aware of licensing and alcohol consumption laws.
Sergeant Rainey said people under the age of 18 could drink alcohol at private events with parental permission.
“It is incumbent if people host these events to get direct or written permission from parents beforehand in case something goes wrong,” he said.
“If you are holding an event and there are minors drinking without the consent of their parents, it’s a fine of $866 for every child.”
Sergeant Rainey said hosts must apply for a liquor licence for an event at a community hall where alcohol was being sold. “Hiring venues doesn’t mean free rein.
“If there is a cover charge or if they are selling alcohol for a price, they are required under law to attain a liquor licence.
“They don’t have to if they are supplying alcohol free of charge, like at a 21st.”
The penalty for selling alcohol without a liquor license is a maximum two years in jail.
Sergeant Rainey also recommended that people register their parties with the police, who monitor the gatherings throughout the night.
He said police would not be lenient when it came to underage drinking.
“We will be vigilant coming into warmer months.
“We will take no excuses on underage drinking. People will be held to account.
“If you are hosting an event, the repercussions fall on you.”