News

USQ under fire for blaming club closure on violence, drugs

A drug raid at the USQ Club in February 2010.
A drug raid at the USQ Club in February 2010.

UPDATE: The University of Southern Queensland has been widely criticised for the reasoning behind the closure of the USQ Club.

The USQ Guild will close the club in January, blaming a spike in drugs, violence and antisocial behaviour.

Social media was abuzz at the weekend as students, ex-students and Toowoomba residents hit out at the decision.

Many readers claimed the reasoning behind the closure was "USQ spin created to cover the fact that they are hellbent on closing the student guild".

There are reports that the USQ Student Guild will be closed down in January, costing about 100 people their jobs.

"What's not mentioned is that the closure of the USQ Club is a small part of the gradual financial strangling of the guild by the university, which receives more than adequate funds to help keep the guild functioning and continuing to provide valuable services to students, both on and off campus," one reader wrote.

Another reader commented: "I recall how/when the building was built in the first place. How the student body got control over it. and I'd hardly suspect the violence is any worse than it was a good decade ago."

Another online commentator also suggested USQ had not revealed the full story behind the closure.

"USQ profit last year was around $11 million. What is the hidden agenda here?"

However, there were plenty of people who supported the decision and agreed violence, drugs and antisocial behaviour were an issue at the USQ Club.

"As usual, it's the actions of a few that ruin it for others," a Facebook user commented.

"Why can't the clubs have a data base that all licences/ 18 plus cards be scanned into. That way if they cause trouble a flag comes up against their name when they try and enter another club."

 

EARLIER: A spike in drugs, violence and antisocial behaviour has sparked the looming closure of the University of Southern Queensland's only nightclub-style venue the USQ Club.

The club has become an extension of the city's nightclub scene rather than servicing staff and students, USQ corporate communications director Dr Aidan Burke said.

The USQ Guild, which currently runs the club, will close the doors in January.

"It stems from those sort of incidents (drug use and fighting) and an increase in antisocial behaviour from patrons who are not USQ students or staff," Dr Burke said.

"The club was originally put there to be used by students.

"We've had a number of those instances over the past few years and the risk to the safety of patrons is the number one concern."

The club's current site will be converted into offices and classrooms for use by the university's Open Access College.

It provides bridging courses for students who flunked out of high school and migrants who have resettled in Toowoomba.

Dr Burke said the USQ Club would be replaced by a new licensed lounge area within the student refectory.

It will be exclusively for the use of students and staff, eliminating the itinerant troublemakers who for so long plagued the old venue.

"It will be more along the lines of Olive Branch (restaurant) on Ruthven St - a bit more upmarket and specific to our needs," Dr Burke said.

"Refurbishments on the refectory are already under way... hopefully they will be finished early next year.

Financial troubles have also had an impact on the decision.

Since the Howard Government eliminated compulsory student fees, the business has struggled to keep its head above water.

"The cost is probably far exceeding the revenue," Dr Burke said.

"The flow on effects have been quite hard."

Topics:  drinking university of southern queensland usq violence



Brisbane's arts and culture events centre stage

A CITY drenched in culture, Brisbane is again flaunting an arts and culture events calendar fit for a queen.

Homewares stores to fulfil your Instagram dreams

No Caption

You too can become an Insta-star with these fab stores.

Date nights under $50

Nothing is more romantic than a picnic with a cracking view.

NOT every date has to cost you a bomb.

Top 10 Brisbane experiences to cross off your bucket list

Do yourself a favour and get amongst the food truck scene. Eat Street is a great place to start.

A GOOD bucket list doesn’t have to span continents or cost millions.

Six mega sporting events you need to be at this year

Don't miss all the action trackside this season.

IF THERE is one thing Brisbane does damn well, it’s play host.

Six reasons to get to Brisbane this Autumn

The Brisbane Powerhouse has free comedy on Friday nights.

AUTUMN has to be up there with one of the best seasons of the year.

The best things to do in Brisbane are FREE. Yes, FREE

Mt Coot-tha is a seriously gorgeous way to start your day.

HEADING to the big smoke doesn’t have to come with a big price tag.

McCulkin murder trial: Jury urged to believe witnesses

Vicki Marie McCulkin, who, with her mother Barbara McCulkin and sister Barbara Leanne McCulkin, disappeared from their Highgate Hill home in January 1974.

Mr O'Dempsey is facing murder charges in relation to family's death.

WIRAC pool to shut in June

WIRAC Pool will shut for a week in June for maintenance.

Other parts of the centre will remain open during the period

Helicopters to inspect electricity network

Powerlink Queensland will patrol Central Queensland skies in September and October.Photo Contributed

Choppers flying high to check regional electricity network

Local Partners

Hervey Bays to star in international horror flick

A great white thriller that had scenes filmed on the Fraser Coast has been picked up by a major US movie studio.

Cher, 71, and Celine Dion wow world at Billboard Awards

“I’m 71 yesterday and I can do a five-minute plank, OK.”

Judah's return to The Voice stage is a knockout

Judah Kelly performs during his knockout round on The Voice.

QUEENSLAND singer nails Adele hit.

Wentworth star Daniielle Alexis: "I was born a boy"

Wentworth star Daniielle Alexis has revealed she was born a boy

Dwayne Johnson, Tom Hanks announce White House bid on SNL

Dwayne Johnson is “officially” running for president in 2020

What to expect at Birds of Tokyo's Ipswich gig

The band will perform at the Racehorse Hotel on Friday.

BAND member Glen Sarangapany talks music, pub grub and doing shoeys

The Voice: Kelly Rowland stunned by singing trio’s demands

We feel your pain, Kelly.

Trio refused to sing anything but Gospel songs

The face of the Sunshine Coast's overpriced rental crisis

Alyx Wilson had to rent a $385 unit in Currimundi because the market was too competitive for cheaper rental housing. She is now renting a room from friends who own a house in Currimundi, and says its much more affordable.

Young people feel the strain in competitive, expensive rental market

WATCH: Take a tour of a tradie's dream home

5a Bruce Hiskens Court, Norman Gardens, going for $720,000. INSET: Lea Taylor.

Huge block with potential for anything

Deputy Premier makes massive call on controversial sand mine

Aerial view of the proposed Forest Glen sand mine.

BREAKING: State Government makes huge call on Coast sand mine plans

Residents warned as scammers rip off $60k in super

Police are warning people to be aware of a sophisticated telephone scam.

Superannuation, cash targeted by sophisticated scammers

How your body corp could ban pets, turf you from your home

DOG'S LIFE: Lyn Henderson and Tawny love life in their highrise.

Laws to ban dogs/smokers and make it easy to bulldoze units

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!