Territory Stories

Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 17 May 1995



Debates Day 2 - Wednesday 17 May 1995

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Parliamentary Record 10


Debates for 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997; ParliamentNT; Parliamentary Record; 7th Assembly 1994 - 1997




Made available by the Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory





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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory

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Attribution International 4.0 (CC BY 4.0)

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Legislative Assembly of the Northern Territory



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DEBATES - Wednesday 17 May 1995 Aboriginal organisations where it can in trying to curb antisocial and violent behaviour affecting their communities and people. Consequently, I fully support the honourable ministers levy of 350 per litre on cask wine which will generate revenue to combat the drunkenness and antisocial behaviour that stems primarily from the excessive consumption of cask wine. The Minister for Health and Community Services is to be congratulated on this bold initiative which is aimed directly at curbing antisocial behaviour and violence. I note that all proceeds from the levy will be directed towards initiatives to combat public drinking, antisocial behaviour and its impact on the community, and those individuals who abuse alcohol. This major initiative can be seen as another plank in the governments overall campaign to combat the abuse of alcohol and to persuade the Territorys total population to use alcohol in a socially acceptable way. In particular, I applaud the ministers specific announcement that the program will employ 2 staff in both Darwin and Alice Springs and one each in Katherine, Tennant Creek and Palmerston to deal with the problems of antisocial behaviour caused by the excessive consumption of cask wine. As I understand it, not only will these people be responsible for the enforcement of the particular measures the minister has announced, but they will be used also in the education of people who consume excessive quantities of cask wine to their own and their communitys detriment. I support wholeheartedly the ministers aim of trying to stamp out the prevalence of antisocial behaviour which is caused by this excessive consumption of cask wine and also the resultant litter problems in the form of empty cask wine containers that are spread throughout the urban centres of the Territory. In my role as Minister for Correctional Services, it is intended that my department and the prisoners will play a major role in the utilisation of the funds that will be made available to the councils. In effect, this funding will not only allow the councils to employ counsellors to speak with people such as the dwellers in the Todd riverbed in Alice Springs, but also the supervision of prisoners on mobile work camps whilst they clean up the riverbed, load rubbish on trucks and take it to the local dump. Given the numbers of prisoners in the system, there is insufficient work in the jails to enable prisoners to be gainfully employed. Minimum security prisoners are available to undertake activities of benefit to the community. This is one way in which we can utilise those prisoners to do something positive and, in some respects, to repay the debt they owe to our society for their misdeeds. In relation to Alice Springs, I was somewhat amazed to hear the comments from the Leader of the Opposition. He really has no vision. He appears to knock things simply for the sake of knocking them. I have considered the problems of alcohol abuse in the Northern Territory over many years. In my role as chairman of the Sessional Committee on Use and Abuse of Alcohol by the Community, I have spoken with thousands of people in the Territory, mainly in communities and in Alice Springs, about the problems created by antisocial behaviour. The way in which our society has changed is a little frightening. I first came to the Territory in 1979. At that time, you could certainly walk in and around the riverbed of the Todd. Possibly, some people would not have been prepared to walk past certain areas of the Todd River at night but, these days, you would not walk across the Todd River in daylight. I despair sometimes when I see young tourists coming from one of the hotels on Barrett Drive 3241