By Andrew Starke
The Northern Territory Government has announced comprehensive reforms to curb alcohol-fuelled violence and crime with Western Australia also considering trialing a drinker ID system.
Attorney-General and Minister for Alcohol Policy, Delia Lawrie, said a new five-point plan would tackle alcohol abuse and reduce anti social behaviour in the Territory.
“Alcohol continues to be involved in 60 per cent of all assaults and 67 per cent of domestic violence assaults which is simply too high, while last year police reported taking people into protective custody 54,000 times,” she said.
“Studies also show that alcohol abuse costs our community a staggering $642 million or $4197 for every adult Territorian compared to $944 per adult nationally.
“Our Government is saying enough is enough and taking tough action to turn off the tap to problem drinkers in our community who continually commit alcohol fuelled violence and crime.
“The reforms will also provide consistency across the Territory and ensure bans on drinking and take away alcohol can be effective anywhere in the Territory.”
WA Racing and Gaming Minister, Terry Waldron, said suitability of introducing a similar program in Western Australia is being reviewed.
The new proposed reforms include:
- Banning problem drinkers from purchasing takeaway alcohol
- Introducing mandatory rehabilitation treatment for problem drinkers
- Rolling out a new Territory-wide Banned Drinker Register in all take away liquor outlets
- Replacing the existing Alcohol Court with a Substance Misuse Assessment and Referral for Treatment (SMART) Court
- Expanding and enhancing rehabilitation and treatment options for problem drinkers