Frequently Asked Questions
This section of the website is currently being reviewed. Additional updates will be made and extra content will be added soon.
This section of the website is intended to provide some answers to the common questions asked by parents, carers and families of young people, or those who engage with young people or their parents, carers or families, in the course of their work.
The content provided is not definitive or exhaustive. If you can’t find what you are looking for or need more information please contact the Youth Solutions team on 02 4628 2319 or visit our contact page for further details on how to get in touch.
For additional support, check out the Get Help section of our website. The 24 Hour Support Lines page is often a good place to start.
In an emergency or crisis situation always call triple zero (000) for police, fire and ambulance and follow instructions.
How can I ensure my child stays safe when they are at a party or on a night out?
Your child has a better chance of remaining safe and avoiding harm at a party or on a night out by following the safety tips listed below. Parents and carers should discuss these tips with their children regularly and encourage them to plan ahead, or consider what they would do if something went wrong on their night out.
If you’re underage…
- Not drinking alcohol is the safest option
- Don’t accept alcohol from adults or ask adults to supply you with alcohol
- Don’t drink alcohol in public places, friends’ houses or at licenced venues
- Don’t use someone else’s ID or a fake ID
- It’s OK to drink non-alcoholic drinks instead of alcohol
If you’re drinking alcohol…
- Count your drinks using standard drinks measures
- Don’t give into peer pressure if you don’t want to drink alcohol
- Eat before, during and after drinking alcohol
- If you’ve been drinking, don’t drive
- Know your limits and stick to them
- Refuse drinks from people you don’t know or trust well
- Refuse strong tasting drinks
If you’re heading out…
- Always stay with your mates and don’t leave anyone behind
- Charge your phone, top up your credit and save important telephone numbers
- Don’t let your friends leave without you, or with someone they don’t know
- Keep your cool and walk away from any situation that makes you feel uncomfortable
- Look for friends, not fights
- Make sure you have enough money for food and transport
- Make sure you have your house keys, wallet and ID with you
- Report any issues to bar staff or security
- Respect yourself and others
- Take a jacket with you
If there’s an emergency…
- Call 000 (triple zero) for police, fire or ambulance in an emergency and listen to the instructions from the operator
- It’s OK to call your parents, carer or another responsible adult to help you if something goes wrong
- It’s OK to tell paramedics if your friend has had drugs or alcohol because it helps them to provide the right care
- Keep calm and stay with your mates
If your plans change…
- It’s OK to call your parent or carer to pick you up if your plans change
- It’s OK to go home earlier than you had planned
- It’s OK to take your friends home if you think they’ve had too much to drink
- Let your parent or carer know if your plans change
If you use social media…
- Always ask for permission before you upload a photo, check in or tag a post with someone else
- Don’t advertise your party plans on social media
- Don’t share or upload inappropriate photos of yourself or others
- Make sure your profile, photos, statuses and events are set to private
- Turn your location settings off and think twice about checking in
What strategies can I use to keep my child’s party safe?
There are many different strategies parents, carers and other adults can use to reduce the chance that something might go wrong if hosting a party for their child.
- ask your child to write a guest list, issue written invitations and ask guests to RSVP their attendance prior to the party
- avoid playing drinking games
- call 000 (triple zero) for police, fire or ambulance if something goes wrong
- ensure guests have a safe way home
- ensure protection from the sun if your party is held outdoors
- ensure you stick to the guest list
- have a plan for how you will manage any incidents (eg. someone gets sick, there are gate crashers)
- hire a security guard, or ask a responsible adult, to manage the guest list at the entrance to the party
- if your party is at home, ensure all secondary entrances are blocked off, so all guests enter from the same area
- if your party is at home, host your party outdoors and limit guests from walking through your house
- inform your neighbours of your party
- lock all your valuables away
- offer a safe place for people to keep their valuable items, if needed
- provide adequate adult supervision
- provide food and non-alcoholic drinks
- register the party online at mynite.com.au or in person at your local police station
- set rules for your party
- specify a start and end time for your party
- ensure you have adequate bins, toilet facilities and space for the number of guests
- if you have a pool, do not allow anyone to go swimming or enter the pool area
- do not allow any underage attendees to bring or consume alcohol
- do not advertise your party on social media
- do not allow the party to be an ‘open house’ party
- do not leave the party unattended
- do not allow anyone to drive if you know they are under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- do not provide alcohol to any underage attendees
- do not allow guests to bring anyone who hasn’t been invited
- do not allow guests to leave and return later, as this will help you to avoid people returning drunk, under the influence of drugs or with uninvited people
How do I ensure minors aren’t drinking alcohol at my child’s party?
There are a few different ways you can ensure any underage guests at your party do not drink alcohol.
- Write it on the invitation, for example: No alcohol allowed / No underage drinking permitted
- Remind guests at the entrance as they arrive
- Do not provide alcohol to underage guests
- Do not allow underage guests to BYO
- Do not allow guests to provide minors with alcohol
What does the law say about providing minors with alcohol?
There are two types of laws governing the consumption of alcohol by minors. They are:
Australian Liquor Laws (Federal)
The legal drinking age in Australia is 18 years. All states and territories prohibit those under this age to purchase alcohol or consume alcohol in licensed premises or in public places.
Secondary Supply Laws (State)
The laws regarding the supply of alcohol to minors have changed across some states and territories. Parents, carers and adults need to be aware of these changes, particularly in regards to hosting teenage parties at home, hosting birthday parties at community venues or having your child stay at a friend’s place.
In NSW, these laws are covered in the Liquor Act 2007 (NSW) and the Summary Offences Act 1988 (NSW). It’s important for parents and carers to familiarise themselves with their legal obligations by consulting NSW Police or the NSW Office of Gaming, Liquor and Racing (OLGR).
The following legislation relates to minors and alcohol:
- Liquor Act 2007
- Part 7: Special provisions relating to minors (those aged under 18 years)
- Division 3: Other provisions relating to minors
- Summary Offences Act 1988
Source: NSW Police, 2012. For further information visit the NSW Police Force.