Home Sydney The ban on drinking for remote NT communities is coming to an...

The ban on drinking for remote NT communities is coming to an end


Prohibitions on alcohol by the Howard government, based on racial affiliation, at the time of the intervention, will end in the Northern Territory in almost 15 years.

Hundreds of remote communities and indigenous camps will soon be able to choose whether they have access to alcohol after the law expires in July.

As a result, the Labor government has amended local alcohol laws, which he said will give communities the opportunity to continue restrictions on alcohol for another two years.

This will give the NT government time to consult with indigenous groups about their long-term alcohol management plan, a spokesman said.

But the NT Aboriginal Health Services Alliance warns that the amendments could become a “recipe for disaster and open gateways” for alcohol if communities do not ask the liquor licensing department to declare them dry.

“This is a dangerous move that could nullify the good results of many of the NT government’s own alcohol reforms,” the spokeswoman said.

“If (communities) either do nothing or decide to take alcohol away, the result will be a mixture of dry and unrestricted communities that will be uncontrollable and alcohol will flow freely between them.

“It’s a recipe for disaster.”

NT opposition spokesman Bill Ian says the amendments were poorly planned policies and could create trouble if remote communities are not elected.

“For six years, Labor has sensationally failed to consult with the highest indigenous organizations representing the territories affected by these changes in the law,” he said.

The Liberal Party of the county has said it will not support the bill, which is scheduled to be debated in parliament this week.

Alcohol bans in the Commonwealth came into force during the 2007 NT Emergency Response, also known as the Intervention.

They continued under the Commonwealth Stronger Futures Act in 2012.

The NT government has stated that the Aboriginal territories have not been properly consulted on this legislation and it does not comply with the principles of self-determination.


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