Customers will not be able to purchase takeaway alcohol in the Kimberley without approved photo ID, as part of a new crackdown under the Banned Drinkers Register (BDR) trial.
ID must now be scanned at the point of sale, which will provide real-time information to staff on whether a person is on the BDR and cannot legally be sold alcohol.
Sales of takeaway alcohol will also be monitored under the Takeaway Alcohol Management System (TAMS), which allows customers to responsibly purchase alcohol according to a daily volume limit for their area.
The McGowan Government’s BDR and TAMS trial is a community-lead initiative designed to target problem drinking and protect the vulnerable.
The two-year Kimberley trial started with a soft launch in May, to allow consumers and licensees time to get familiar with the new identification requirements.
Since the rollout began, there have been more than 301,000 ID scans in the Kimberley, with 18 ban matches. There are 34 residents on the BDR, with 21 of those self-referrals.
In the Pilbara, where the BDR trial began last December, there have been more than 774,000 scans and 43 ban matches. Currently, 46 residents are on the BDR, and nine of those are self-referrals.
The State Government has engaged local company Scantek to develop a BDR/TAMS app that can be used on a mobile device such as a smart phone or tablet.
The mobile app is expected to be available for use by licensees in both the Pilbara and Kimberley by October.
The enhanced mobile feature will provide greater accessibility and flexibility to licensees who have volunteered to take part in the trial when a fixed scanning unit is not as practical, such as in a drive-through bottle shop.
The trial, which has been supported by the Kimberley’s four local governments, will be evaluated by The University of Western Australia.
As stated by Racing and Gaming Minister Reece Whitby:
“The McGowan Government is committed to working with local communities to tackle alcohol-related harm and protect the vulnerable.
“The successful rollout of the BDR trial in the Pilbara has given us every confidence in achieving the same success in the Kimberley region.
“By slowly introducing the trial, it has given consumers and licensees time to get used to the requirements and new technology. The introduction of the BDR/TAMS app will help make the program more accessible and flexible.
“The fact that 21 people have added themselves to the BDR in the Kimberley shows there is strong community support for the trial.”
As stated by Kimberley MLA Divina D’Anna:
“I am pleased the McGowan Government is working with the community to combat alcohol-related issues.
“There is no easy fix to addressing the destructive behaviour that comes from alcohol abuse and other long-standing issues in the community. However, the BDR trial is one of a number of initiatives the Government is using to protect the vulnerable and provide support for those facing alcohol addiction.
“I would like to congratulate all those that have made this trial possible including the licensees, community advocates and the Kimberley’s four local governments.”