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Labour MPs put spotlight on alcohol-related harm

22 August 2012 MEDIA STATEMENT

Labour MPs put spotlight on alcohol-related harm

Labour MP, Lianne Dalziel, has today outlined a range of individual amendments to the Alcohol Reform Bill to highlight the issues the Government doesn’t want debated.

“Individual Labour MPs have tabled SOPs that pick up some of the more important recommendations of the Law Commission so they can be properly debated in Parliament.

“The evidence shows that action needs to be taken on a range of fronts but the Government’s Alcohol Reform Bill falls well short of what communities have been demanding of Parliament.”

Lianne Dalziel said the Labour caucus had decided to retain the conscience vote on the Alcohol Reform Bill in order to ensure that all these matters could be debated.

“This means that individual MPs cannot automatically rely on their colleagues’ support, which will depend on the strength of the arguments they can mount.

“I have no problem with that, because this approach means the important issues will be debated, not only in Parliament, but also back in the electorates where communities have taken action against the proliferation of liquor licences and the impacts of alcohol-fuelled violence and property damage in their neighbourhoods.

Lianne Dalziel said the previous government had asked the Law Commission to include a bill with their report to give effect to their recommendations.

“This was to ensure that the bill we debated in Parliament would have the evidence base to guide MPs in what can be a highly-charged debate.

“Unfortunately this government knows better than that and introduced its own bill, which does little more than the one the previous government introduced before the 2008 election and before the Law Commission had started its inquiry.

“The truth is that we could already have Local Alcohol Plans throughout New Zealand if National had allowed that bill to pass,” said Lianne Dalziel.

“Instead we have increasing alcohol-fuelled pressure on communities and a Minister that will not listen and will not debate the issues.

She said MPs who had prepared SOPs so far had taken their ideas from the Law Commission report and from the range of communities who are seeking real change.

Lianne Dalziel – Minimum Pricing regulation making power

Iain Lees-Galloway - Advertising of alcohol & sponsorship changes and reducing Blood Alcohol Content

Charles Chauvel – Strengthening of Local Alcohol Policies

Louisa Wall - Off licence premises cannot locate within 1km of an ECE, primary, intermediate or secondary school

Maryan Street - Health levy on Point of Sale for off–licences to be used for alcohol and drug health initiatives.

Sue Moroney - Warnings on labels and nutritional information

David Clark - Restriction on broadcast advertising and removal of excise tax on Low Alcohol Products

Su’a William Sio - Boards of Trustees for schools and ECEs to be given standing on licensing decisions

Andrew Little - Amendment to Trading hours for licensed premises

Phil Twyford – Commencement of Local Alcohol Policy provisions reduced from 12 months to 3 months

ends

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