On 24 January 2023, the Prime Minister of Australia and the Chief Minister of the Northern Territory met with a number of stakeholders in Alice Springs regarding alcohol-related harm and crime occurring in the town. As a result, immediate alcohol restrictions were implemented for three months and the office of the Central Australia Regional Controller (OCARC) was established.
This report from the OCARC sets out alarming statistics for domestic violence and alcohol-related harm. It is clear that action must be taken to address the unacceptable levels of harm being faced by residents in town camps and nearby remote communities, including the harm being suffered by visitors from outlying remote communities and including other states.
It is recommended that the NT Government, with the help and partnership of the Commonwealth, acts to implement immediate restrictions for takeaway alcohol on town camps and nearby remote communities. The best way to do this is by amending the Liquor Act 2019 on urgency.
These measures form part of the response to the current crisis which will then enable the development and implementation of community-led alcohol management plans (AMPs).