The Western Australian Government has appointed Commissioner Fred Riebeling to the Town of Port Hedland, a move that the Liquor Stores Association of WA (LSA WA) has applauded.

Following the Commissioner’s appointment, LSA WA has called for a renewed, sensible debate around the alcohol restrictions and strategies currently engulfing the region.

CEO Peter Peck, says it’s the appointment is a positive move forward and will support the successful implementation of the Banned Drinkers Register (BDR) trial.

The BDR concept, which has been well received by government, industry and stakeholders, focuses on problem drinkers with an appropriate treatment strategy that will enable health professionals to help them or others affected by their behaviour. It will also aim to reduce anti-social behaviour with a more focused approach.

“The BDR trial is an effective tool to prevent recidivous offending and will block people from buying alcohol. It has no bearing on those who comply with the law,” Peck said.

“Sledgehammer measures including a complete ban on all liquor as championed by Port Hedland Mayor Camillo Blanco are never going to work. They are simply illogical and impractical.

“In a time where WA Tourism is starting to recover we need to show leadership, we need to foster good workable relations with all stakeholders and not fall into a state of panic,” Peck added.

Peck stressed that LSA WA supports the responsible consumption, service and purchase of alcohol but “it shouldn’t come at the expense of those who comply with all the laws of the land as opposed to those who break them”.

LSA WA will be aiming to meet the new Commissioner of Port Hedland soon to offer a briefing on the merits of the BDR.

Deborah Jackson

Deb joined Intermedia in 2015 as Editor of National Liquor News and Deputy Editor of The Shout. Since then, she has also worked as the Editor of Beer & Brewer and the New Zealand title, World of Wine....

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