Article Title

An evaluation of the effects of alcohol restrictions in Fitzroy Crossing relating to measurable health and social outcomes, community perceptions and alcohol related behaviours after two years

Abstract

On 27 September 2007, the Director of Liquor Licensing released his decision on restricting the sale of packaged liquor in Fitzroy Crossing. It was his finding that as of 2 October 2007; the following restriction would be in place for six months:

The sale of packaged liquor, exceeding a concentration of ethanol in liquor of 2.7 per cent at 20 degrees Celsius, is prohibited to any person, other than a lodger (as defined in Section 3 of the Act).

On 16 May 2008, the Director of Liquor Licensing extended the restriction indefinitely beginning on the 18 May 2008, with an annual review to test its ongoing effectiveness.

Overview:

Two years following the implementation of the restriction, the quantitative and qualitative data reveals continuing health and social benefits for the residents of Fitzroy Crossing and the Fitzroy Valley communities. A clear finding of the evaluation has been that when the volume of alcohol is reduced, health and social benefits increase.

Two years after the implementation of the alcohol restriction in Fitzroy Crossing the benefits to the Fitzroy Valley continue to be:

• reduced severity of domestic violence;

• reduced severity of wounding from general public violence;

• reduced street drinking;

• a quieter town;

• less litter;

• families purchasing more food and clothing;

• families being more aware of their health and being proactive in regard to their children’s health;

• reduced humbug and anti-social behaviour;

• reduced stress for service providers;

• increased effectiveness of services already active in the valley;

• generally better care of children and increased recreational activities; and,

• a reduction in the amount of alcohol being consumed by Fitzroy and Fitzroy Valley residents.