By Andy Young

The Liquor Stores Association Northern Territory (LSA NT) has put its support behind the NT Government’s plans to re-introduce the Banned Drinkers Register (BDR).

The targeted initiative aims to help curb anti-social behaviour and alcohol related harm, and to ensure the BDR is effective the LSA NT has recommended that it apply to all types of licensed premises – including on-premise consumption venues such as bars, taverns and hotels, as well as take-away outlets. 

The BDR is due to be reintroduced on 1 September this year and LSA NT told TheShout that it also supports “the tightening up of Protective Custody triggers and Alcohol Related Infringement notices as these go to the core of targeting those individuals who are problem drinkers.”

LSA NT President Faye Hartley said: “Representatives of LSA NT will meet with the Minister this week to discuss the installation of the BDR hardware in stores and to voice the concerns of our members that the seven year old recycled BDR technology is too unreliable, too slow and too cumbersome.  In many small stores the counter areas are very limited and the outdated BDR equipment takes up more space than most ‘point-of-sale’ systems, causing further inconvenience for customers.

“The seven year old BDR scanners also had difficulty identifying some types of ID which significantly increased the processing time of each customer.  If the Government wants the public to fully accept the BDR they need to address the speed, accuracy and efficiency of the system.”

With no date or information yet made available on when trialling and training for the BDR will take place, LSA NT has also raised concerns about the Chief Minister’s insistence on the 1 September start date. The Association said that it will ask the Minister and the Director General – Licensing and Police, to assist with in-store training for staff, to help them deal with the abusive and aggressive behaviour they receive from some members of the community when refused service.

Hartley added: “LSA NT also understands that the Government has trialled a new iPad style scanner which initially offers significantly faster processing than the previous equipment.  LSA NT is keen to assist the government with the reintroduction of a more efficient system and is offering assistance to trial the new technology in our member’s’ stores.

“We are aware of issues with queues at drive-thru bottle shops during peak times, particularly on Sundays when our members are not permitted to open.  However, it is important that LSA NT member stores are able to provide the same efficient service to their customers and that no-one is inconvenienced by out of date and unreliable equipment whether they are purchasing from a liquor store or a bottle shop, to ensure all law abiding Territorians get a fair go.”

Last week TheShout reported that Woolworths has praised the Northern Territory Government over the plans to re-introduce the BDR.

The Shout Team

The leading online news service for Australia's beer, wine, spirits and hospitality industries.

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