WA restricts takeaway alcohol sales

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The Australian Hotels Association (AHA) WA is working with licensed venues across WA to ensure the newly announced restrictions on take-away liquor sales are understood and implemented.

AHA(WA) CEO Bradley Woods said these restrictions are very disappointing and will be difficult as they will create more foot traffic into venues, but we will be doing our best to ensure they are implemented in accordance with the law.

“So far the hospitality industry has been hit with a massive tourism industry shutdown, domestic shut-down of food and beverage services on-premise and now a restriction on sales, all of which are imposing devastating harm on our industry,” Mr Woods.

“It is critical that venues can maintain take-away trade and delivery services to minimise job losses and cater to genuine community needs.”

“There are over 1,000 licensed venues across the state that have the capacity and the legal right to offer take-away and delivery alcohol and we strongly encourage the Government to not damage these businesses anymore and resist calls for other businesses to also offer take-away alcohol.”

“Whilst these restrictions are regrettable, we have given our commitment to support Premier Mark McGowan in his efforts to maintain order and contain the spread of COVID-19, whilst still trying to protect the viability of our hospitality industry.”

“We are trying hard to keep venues open in some capacity so it is critical that no further restrictions are placed on WA businesses, particularly in cases where there are no such restrictions in other Australian jurisdictions.”

Statement from Premier Mark McGowan’s office

COVID-19 response: Temporary changes to takeaway alcohol

Wednesday, 25 March 2020

  • Temporary limits for takeaway alcohol to assist with COVID-19 response
  • Ensuring our hospitals are well resourced to manage increased pressure
  • Minimising alcohol-related problems during periods of social distancing
  • Restrictions will be reviewed after two weeks

The State Government, in consultation with the WA Commissioner of Police, has introduced temporary restrictions on takeaway alcohol across the State, to ensure Western Australia is well prepared to respond to COVID-19 and minimise alcohol-related problems in the community.

The restrictions will be implemented for a minimum two-week period, and will then be reviewed.

Under the changes, takeaway alcohol will be limited to the following amounts, per customer, each day:

  • one carton of beer, cider or pre-mixed spirits; or
  • three bottles of wine; or
  • one litre of spirits; or
  • one litre of fortified wine; or
  • a combination of any two of the above (but not a combination of two of the same product).

Existing takeaway restrictions in particular communities will remain in place.

The new restrictions come into effect immediately from 10am today (March 25). They will be introduced for a two-week period, and will be extended or altered at any time if necessary.

Comments attributed to Premier Mark McGowan:

“These are extraordinary times, and every Western Australian needs to play their part, in the best interests of the State.

“These restrictions are not intended to stop people from having a responsible drink. They are relatively minor, sensible measures that will help ensure our State is in a strong position to respond to COVID-19.

“Alcohol-related issues take up an enormous amount of resources in our health system. These are resources we simply cannot afford to spare during the COVID-19 situation.

“We expect our hospital system to be under pressure in coming weeks, and we need as many hospital staff as possible on hand to assist.

“I also don’t want to see a situation where Western Australians move towards buying up large amounts of alcohol during times where they may be staying at home for extended periods, to adhere to social distancing rules.

“This only will result in problems throughout our society that we cannot afford right now.

“These are problems that will stretch our police force and only put more pressure on our hospital system.

“The new restrictions will be introduced for a two-week period to start with, and we will extend them or alter them if necessary.

“I thank Western Australians for their understanding and co-operation during this time.”

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