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Parents, Alcohol and the Law

Parents, Alcohol and the Law

This week our blog was about teenagers and alcohol. It is important that our children have the knowledge required to keep themselves and their friends safe. It is also very important that we, as adults, understand our responsibilities in regard to alcohol. The law in Western Australia has changed recently. Are you aware of these changes?

It is now illegal to supply alcohol to a minor in unlicensed premises unless you have parental permission. The unlicensed premises include your home.

These laws empower parents. They allow you to make a formal and legal decision about your child and alcohol. The laws were driven by community concern that parents previously did not have this power. The laws are also driven by growing awareness of the damage that alcohol can do to the teenage developing brain.

The following is an extract from the website of WA Department of Racing, Gaming and Liquor

Secondary Supply Laws FAQ’s

Q: What are the changes relating to supplying liquor to a juvenile as a result of the new secondary supply laws?

A: It is now an offence for a person to supply liquor to a juvenile without the consent of the juvenile’s parent or guardian – the penalty is $10,000.

Q: Can liquor be sold/supplied to a juvenile on licensed premises with the consent of a parent/guardian?

A: No.  It has always been an offence to sell or supply liquor to a juvenile on licensed premises, with or without the consent of a parent/guardian.

Q: What was the law before this legislation came into place?

A: It was previously not an offence to supply liquor to juveniles on unlicensed premises without parental/guardian consent.

Q: Why did the law change?

A: Community concern about the supply of liquor to juveniles was a significant driving factor.  The new law empowers the parents of juveniles to take control as to whether their children can or cannot consume liquor..

Q: What if a 17-year-old attends the 18th birthday party of a friend and the person whose party it is supplies the 17-year-old with alcohol?

A: The 18-year-old will need consent to do so from the 17-year-old’s parent or guardian – failure to obtain consent will make the 18-year-old liable for at $10,000 fine.

There are more questions and answers available at: http://www.rgl.wa.gov.au/liquor/liquor-legislation-amendment-act/faq-s

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