@ Steve Brown: PAAC has never backed off from arguing …

Comment on Much less drunken violence an early Christmas present by Vicki Gillick.

@ Steve Brown: PAAC has never backed off from arguing for what works, and has supported the presence of police, and now PALIs, outside bottle shops for a long time – based on evidence. The sporadic presence of police in the past couple of years has been the result of police decisions.
The posting of officers at bottle shops has at times depended on who was in charge. PAAC has not held back from lobbying the police and the government about this erratic presence. You can find numerous media releases on our website – or Google.
The current Government took the position that TBLs or POSIs were an operational matter – a separation of powers argument if you like, and the result was certainly very frustrating at times. Thanks to the Riley Review and its implementation, we now have PALIs doing this work.
The BDR is not useless. There are currently around 2500 people on it in the NT, but the residence-based inquiries of PALIs certainly work. There is no doubt that the scheme is discriminatory, but arguably it is positive discrimination.
Not sure if you have made much constructive contribution to this debate in the past Steve, either as a town councillor, political candidate, or individual, but we are happy to be pointed in the direction of any references.
PAAC is a lobby group, and it pursues whoever is in government, whether the ALP or your old party, the CLP. We also lobby the Police Commissioner and respond to the police union – the NT Police Association – which has strongly opposed the use of sworn officers outside take-away outlets.
There are several factors contributing to the ongoing reduction in consumption, and it is true that the legislated floor price is unlikely to affect Alice as much as Darwin, which has sadly seen little in the way of reforms over the years. Our supermarkets have led on voluntary pricing, as you would, or should, know.
PAAC isn’t hanging its head in shame, and it doesn’t seek to take full credit for beneficial change. But we are pleased that we finally have a combination of measures which, when evaluated, will hopefully show what has the best effect and what is the benefit to the community.
We also have some progressive changes to the Liquor Act, including the power of the Police Commissioner to suspend trading (available to police in WA for some time), and an onus on licence applicants to meet a community interest test.
These are very interesting times for alcohol reform in the NT, and it is worth reflecting on how far we have come in the past twenty years. It’s a complex issue, and supply reduction is certainly not the only solution, but it helps a lot. Check out Opal fuel.
So, no head-hanging, no shamefulness. Let’s be thankful for the changes in ED presentations, and here’s to peace on the streets and food on the table. Merry Christmas.

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