16 Mar 2011

Bouncer licensing delay leaves tourists at risk - father

7:03 am on 16 March 2011

The family of a man killed by a nightclub bouncer says delaying the licensing of bouncers until after the Rugby World Cup will put foreign tourists at risk.

The Government has postponed new rules for door staff and crowd controllers for five months because of the risk of not having enough staff during the tournament.

Pat Heagney's son Matthew Heagney died after he was thrown out of a Blenheim night club in August 2009.

Former nightclub owner Kevin King was found guilty of manslaughter and sentenced to 12 months home detention.

Mr Heagney says the new rules could have saved his son and should be in place to protect World Cup visitors.

He says the Government fast-tracked assistance for the Hobbit film but does not seem to care if people in bars and nightclubs are safe.

However, the Hospitality Association says the changes have been coming for six years and never had anything to do with the World Cup.

The Security Association says it is not possible to get tens of thousands of door and crowd control staff registered in time for the tournament.