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Liquor ban extended for remote community

Date posted: 17 June 2016

Racing and Gaming Minister, the Hon Colin Holt BSc MLC, has extended the ban on liquor in the remote Aboriginal community of Wangkatjungka in the Fitzroy Valley region of Western Australia (WA).

The ban, which was implemented under section 175(1a) of the Liquor Control Act 1988 (WA), was introduced in 2008 and prohibits people from possessing and transporting liquor into the community.

'The Wangkatjungka community were pioneers as the first liquor-restricted area declared in Western Australia, after a request from community leaders in 2008,' said Minister Holt.

'Since that time, the community has experienced improved safety and security for its residents. The feedback I have received indicates the majority of people at Wangkatjungka are in favour of the alcohol ban being extended...These restrictions, which are fully supported by police and health authorities, have positively impacted the lives of people living in the community and, as a result, I have agreed to extend them for a further three years.'

The restrictions apply to an area of more than 270 hectares encompassing the Wangkatjungka community and will now be in place until April 22, 2019.

The Minister has said that excessive alcohol consumption had a link to domestic violence across the Fitzroy Valley and believes that WA Police are able to use the liquor restrictions as an effective tool in ensuring alcohol-driven issues were better managed within the community.

'The restrictions also give the community itself the ability to control behaviour and reduce incidents of violence and antisocial behaviour,' he said.

'I am told local police are working with the Kurungal Council, which has applied for crime prevention funding to start their own community patrols enforcing liquor restrictions. This is an encouraging development.'

Penalties for breaches of the regulations range from $2,000 for an individual to $5,000 for a licensee or manager.

Source: Government of Western Australia Media Statements


Last updated: 22 June 2016
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