The Kimberley is the next Western Australian region set to benefit from the McGowan Government’s trial of a nearly $1 million Banned Drinkers Register (BDR) expected to start this May.
The first BDR trial was introduced in the Pilbara last December, but came into full effect on Monday (January 4).
The BDR aims to address alcohol-related harm by targeting problem drinkers and restricting their access to takeaway alcohol.
Western Australian company Scantek will provide technology that will scan an ID and display a green light if the sale can proceed or a red light if the individual is a registered banned drinker and cannot legally be sold takeaway alcohol.
The scanner will also include the Takeaway Alcohol Management System, which allows customers to responsibly purchase alcohol according to a daily volume limit for their area.
Personal information on the BDR will remain confidential and no records will be kept by licensees about the purchaser, what they have purchased or if they have been refused service.
People who would like to voluntarily remove their access to takeaway alcohol can elect to be placed on the BDR.
Those identified as banned drinkers will be directed to appropriate community services to provide access to relevant support programs and initiatives.
The Department of Local Government, Sport and Cultural Industries will soon begin extensive consultation with licensees and other key stakeholders.
The trial, which has also been supported by the Kimberley’s four local governments, will be evaluated by The University of Western Australia’s Public Policy Institute.
As stated by Racing and Gaming Minister Paul Papalia:
“The McGowan Government continues to work with local governments, police, industry and the community to reduce alcohol-related harm in the Kimberley, and this is a proactive move to address alcohol abuse and antisocial behaviour in the Kimberley community.
“The BDR concept specifically targets people with alcohol problems, rather than blanket restrictions which impact upon the entire community.
“The TAMS component provides an effective tool for people to responsibly consume alcohol and to reduce alcohol-related harm.
“I would like to congratulate all those that have made this trial possible including the licensees and the Kimberley’s four local governments, which have also contributed financially to the trial.”