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'Foolish Behaviour': Gay And Lesbian Mardi Gras Revellers Warned On Drugs And Alcohol

Police will have a big presence at Saturday's iconic parade.

04/03/2017 11:10 AM AEDT | Updated 04/03/2017 11:53 AM AEDT
Daniel Munoz / Reuters
Revellers are being urged to play it safe at Mardi Gras on Saturday night.

Police say they will be out in force at Saturday night's Gay and Lesbian Mardi Gras Parade as Sydneysiders gear up for the annual celebration of sexual diversity.

Hundreds of thousands of spectators are expected to head into the Sydney CBD tonight for the colourful parade that in 2017 enters its 39th year.

Police said a high-visibility operation would be launched for the event that in the past has been the centre of allegations of heavy handed enforcement by authorities.

Police have said they are taking extra care with their plans this year in the wake of recent global events, including the Orlando gay nightclub massacre.

Acting Assistant Police Commissioner Tony Crandell called on participants, spectators, residents and the wider community to look out for one another at the event.

He said police would focus on maintaining public safety in and around the parade.

"Police have been working with parade organisers and the LGBTIQ community to ensure a safe and fun night for all those taking part and supporting the event," Acting Assistant Commissioner Crandell said in a statement on Saturday.

"We're pleased to continue our collaborative effort and are focused on maintaining professional policing services for everyone involved based on mutual respect and recognition of the LGBTIQ community."

Illicit drugs and alcohol-fuelled bad behaviour would also be targeted, Crandell said.

"Make no mistake, alcohol affects your ability to assess risks, make decisions and behave responsibly so think before you drink and don't ruin your night with foolish behaviour. The same goes for those who consume or attempt to distribute illicit drugs."

The police operation will involve the Public Order and Riot Squad, Operations Support Group, Mounted Unit, Dog Unit, PolAir, Licensing Police, Highway Patrol Command and Police Transport Command.

As police prepare for the iconic night on Oxford Street, revellers look to be getting party-ready.

Sharing my love and support for the LGBT community on Mardi Gras day! Have fun everybody!

A post shared by Bert (@bert_the_schnauzer) on


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