Plans to expand WA’s Banned Drinker Register welcomed

15 January, 2021 by Andy Young

The Liquor Stores Association WA and Australian Hotels Association WA have both welcomed the Western Australian Labor Party’s pre-election pledge to expand its Banned Drinkers Register (BDR) if re-elected in March’s state election.

The McGowan Government said it intends to expand the BDR trial to the seat of Kalgoorlie. A BDR is already underway in WA’s Pilbara and is set to be launched across the Kimberley in May. The scheme operates by targeting problem drinkers to reduce alcohol related harm.

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LSAWA CEO Peter Peck, said a BDR for Kalgoorlie-Boulder and the Goldfields had been a long time coming.

“This is really exciting news for everyone across the region. The issues around alcohol fuelled violence have been well documented and now is the right time for change. I am confident our member stores will embrace this.”

Peck said rolling out a BDR across the Goldfields would provide uniformity across regional WA.

“It doesn’t matter if you’re heading from the Pilbara to the Kimberley or down to the Goldfields, people will automatically know they will have to show photo ID which will have to be scanned at the point of sale if they wish to buy alcohol.

“There’s no doubt the BDR will bring about change, in the way we think and act when it comes to buying take-away alcohol but that can only be a good thing for the wider community,” he said.

AHA WA CEO Bradley Woods also welcomed the election commitment, saying it will help address problem drinking in the region and is likely to commence in May.

“The AHA has advocated for a BDR for over a decade – the announcement of a trial in the Kalgoorlie region builds on the trial already underway in the Pilbara and signals an important move away from the imposition of ineffective blanket restrictions,” Woods said.

“We welcome this election commitment.”

Additionally Peck acknowledged the efforts of Racing and Gaming Minister Paul Papalia who has advocated and championed the roll out of the BDR across the state.

“Minister Papalia has been a massive driving force on this and without him these harm minimisation measures would not be in place,” he said.

Peck said depending on the results of the state election, he hoped the BDR trial for the Goldfields would commence before the end of the year.