Where do the major parties stand on alcohol policy measures?
Ahead of the 2016 Legislative Assembly election, where do ACT politicians stand on key alcohol policies aimed at protecting Canberra kids from further alcohol harm?
FARE asked the major parties and candidates to respond to six alcohol policy questions, based on FARE’s ACT Election Platform 2016: Protecting Canberra kids from alcohol harm. This scorecard has been developed based on the responses received.
Election platform overview
All children deserve the best start in life. They deserve to live in a safe, supportive, and caring environment that supports and enables them to live long, healthy, and happy lives. For a country like Australia, and in a jurisdiction like the Australian Capital Territory (ACT), this should be the norm.
However, we continue to fail our children. With attention often focused on violence around pubs, clubs and bars, alcohol’s impact on families is often overlooked. Far too many children are being exposed to risk factors, such as alcohol, that cause both short and long-term harm. Canberrans want political parties to address this oversight to ensure we are giving our kids the best start in life.
FARE’s platform highlights the need to better protect children and address environmental factors in the ACT that are contributing to alcohol harm.
1. Empower and support individuals
- Provide $1 million over four years to establish a Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) clinic in the ACT.
- Provide $200,000 over two years to roll out the Game Changer+ program to all 19 government high schools in the ACT.
- Maintain annual funding of $2.2 million for the ACT Health Promotion Grants Program.
2. Give communities a greater voice
- Strengthen community engagement in liquor licensing matters.
- Expand the Liquor Advisory Board to include a parent representative.
3. Create a healthy environment
- Ban alcohol advertising on all ACT Government property.
- Ban alcohol advertising from ACT sporting grounds.
- Isolate alcohol products in supermarkets to areas children cannot access and restrict alcohol promotions to inside this area.
- Regulate on- and off-licence promotions equally, and ban bulk purchase promotions that result in alcohol being sold for less than one dollar per standard drink.
- Amend planning and liquor licensing legislation to require outlet density to be considered when granting new liquor licences.
- Enforce “special control zones” where community protection from alcohol harm is required.
- Increase annual licence fees for all bottle shops by a minimum of 25 per cent.
4. Enforce industry accountability
- Introduce Controlled Purchase Operations to enforce supply to minor legal provisions and grant ACT Policing power to impose tough sanctions on those who breach the law.
- Ban alcohol promotions that associate alcohol with sporting or cultural events.
- Actively monitor alcohol promotions and impose tough and timely sanctions on those who undertake banned promotional activities.