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Govt must give high priority to Change Alcohol Controls

Government must give high priority to Change Alcohol Controls

Chairman of the Auckland Council Community Safety Forum Councillor George Wood is calling for the new Government to make the implementation of alcohol reforms with strong teeth a high priority. In the last term of Parliament the National lead Government put through a bill, the Alcohol Reform Bill, but it was never implemented.

“I am calling on this new Government to quickly dust off the bill and look closely as to whether the proposed legislation has the necessary teeth to effect change to the horrible situation occurring nightly across the Auckland region. People buying cheap alcohol and preloading has become a national disgrace.”

Mr Wood is calling for new hours of restricting opening for all off-licence premises including supermarkets from 11am to 10pm on the days that they are permitted to open. “This will stop people buying alcohol from the time they roll out of bed in the morning and prevent preloading and access to cheap alcohol right through the night, which is the situation across Auckland right now.”

The Auckland Council has been gearing up to implement new policies and bylaws once the Government makes the necessary changes to the alcohol distribution laws. We wish to see far stricter controls on the ability of patrons to leave bars and return, especially in the early hours of the morning. At these times it is suspected that bar patrons are able to leave and drink their cheap alcohol, which is stashed nearby.

“The Auckland Council has done a huge amount of work to bring the problems associated with the misuse of alcohol under control but we desperately need the legislation to be enacted. Alcohol is seen as the most harmful of all the drugs being misused out in our communities and it must be controlled more strictly, especially for young people. One only has to look at the mayhem that our emergency services are trying to deal with to realise that the current situation is a disaster.”

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