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NT govt restricts takeaway grog licences

AAP logoAAP 20/10/2016 Lucy Hughes Jones

No new grog licences at bottle shops will be considered in the Northern Territory as part of government efforts to curb alcohol abuse.

Attorney-General Natasha Fyles has told parliament the new Labor government has approved guidelines to stop the "irresponsible handing out of takeaway alcohol licences".

"This is the first step in fulfilling our election commitment to restrict new licences to only greenfield sites, new restaurants, hotels and bespoke industries such as mango beer," she said.

Ms Fyles says problem drinking is one of the biggest challenges facing the Territory, and leads to domestic violence and illnesses such as foetal alcohol spectrum disorder.

Labor also plans to introduce a banned drinkers register while it reviews the former Country Liberal government's alcohol mandatory treatment scheme.

Under the scheme, anyone who is drunk and detained by police three times in two months goes before a tribunal and could be forced into rehabilitation.

"We will wait for that evidence before we can put appropriate alternative treatments in place," Ms Fyles said.

She said temporary beat locations, where police stand outside liquor stores to stop intoxicated people buying alcohol, would continue at the discretion of police.

"The police will decide where and when police resources will be used," she said.

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