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Party register pitched for high-school ball after-parties

By Georgia Weaver for The Press

A police-monitored party register aimed at university students is being pitched to high-school pupils for the ball season.

The website was set up by the Riccarton West Neighbourhood Policing Team in February and has had 50 incident-free parties registered so far.

Sergeant Steve Jones said the website had made a noticeable difference in Riccarton, where there had been fewer liquor ban breaches and problems in the streets.

The team would now promote the website to secondary schools to encourage pupils to keep their peers safe at after-ball and birthday parties, he said.

Christchurch mother Kerrie Lang used the website after agreeing to host her daughter Jayne’s after-ball party earlier this month, and found it a great help.

“It’s fantastic. I’m telling everyone. I wanted the year 12 and 13s to have a blast, but I know I’ve done everything I can to keep them out of trouble,” she said.

Jones said the website aimed to prevent problems through greater education, and the policing team was working with students’ associations from Lincoln and Canterbury universities to spread responsible- drinking awareness.

Lincoln University Students’ Association president Kahlia Fryer said students were cautious about using the site.

“It takes them a bit to grasp, but once they know the purpose, they’re responsible,” she said.

University of Canterbury student Evie Trolove did not hesitate to register a party at her flat.

“No-one was worried that the cops were there,” she said.

Jones said the policing team did not visit every registered party, and checked in only when necessary.

The core responsibility still rested with the organisers, he said.

The website is funded by the ACC and Health Promotions Agency.