YNOT Submission to the Review of the Liquor Licencing Act September 2014
The Youth Network of Tasmania (YNOT) appreciates the opportunity to provide this submission on the Review of the Liquor Licensing Act 1990- Proposals Paper. Alcohol is often associated with significant levels of harm among Australians, particularly young people. Heavy drinking at a young age can adversely affect brain development and is linked to alcohol-related problems in later life. Research shows that although the number of 12–17 year olds who are drinking alcohol has remained fairly stable during the past decade, the proportion of those who are drinking at harmful levels has increased significantly in that time (Australian Drug Foundation 2012).
This Liquor Licensing Act 1990 is highly relevant to the Tasmanian Youth Sector as many young people are engaged within the Tasmanian drinking culture in some capacity. It is important that the legislation in place is reflective of the time and that the needs of young people are taken into consideration. The Tasmanian Alcohol Action Framework 2010-2015 Rising Above the Influence states that alcohol is one of the most widely used recreational drugs in Australia. The consumption of alcohol is accepted as part of our culture and Tasmania has the highest proportion of young people who drink alcohol at risky or high risk levels (19.8% which is well about the national rate of 15.3%). Tasmania’s rate of deaths caused by consumption of alcohol for young people aged 15-24 is the third highest of all jurisdictions. Given these alarming statistics, it is vital that risky drinking behaviour of young people is addressed.
YNOT has addressed a selection of the proposed changes to the Liquor Licensing Act 1990 that we see as relevant to young people. YNOT would be would be keen to participate in any further consultations in relation to this topic.