Home' National Liquor News : NLN FEB 2017 Contents 86 | FEBRUARY 2017 NATIONAL LIQUOR NEWS
WHAT WERE THE HIGHLIGHTS FOR
LSA WA IN 2016?
There were quite a few highlights for 2016
however I feel two of the most significant
were the decision to appoint a Government
Relations and Communications Manager.
This was finalised in late September and we
are already showing a considerable increase
in engagement and progress with both the
Government and the opposition as well as
mainstream media outlets.
As a board, we knew we had to take our
profile to the next level. I believe you’re only
effective as an Association when you have the
ability to encourage positive legislative change
for the benefit of your members, and the ability
to defend them in the arena of public opinion.
The second highlight was the 2016 Liquor
Industry Awards held in the grand ballroom of
the Hyatt Perth. This year we had 300 guests
which is well up from last year featuring
more than 10 members of Parliament
including Ministers and Shadow Ministers. It
is reassuring to see the industry with such a
positive mindset with participation from both
members and corporate partners.
WHAT WILL BE THE MAJOR FOCUS
FOR LSA WA IN 2017?
The LSA WA will be focusing in 2017 on
liquor reform. Particularly the trading
hours of regional liquor stores across
Western Australia. Currently the Liquor Act
discriminates against packaged liquor outlets
that do not form part of a hotel license, which
seems to be the elephant in the room when it
comes to amending the Act.
I am yet to be convinced that the packaged
alcohol from a hotel licensed bottle shop
tastes, looks, or smells different to the same
product sold through a liquor store. For as
long as I can remember the Australian way
of life has always been to give everyone ‘A
All our members want is a level playing field
and not to be unfairly handicapped by anti-
competitive legislation. With the state election
on 11 March, we are strongly prosecuting
this case with all parties across the political
spectrum both large and small.
WHAT ARE SOME OF THE
CHALLENGES FACING LSA WA?
Like most jurisdictions Western Australia has a
very strong anti-alcohol lobby backed by some
of the state’s most financial foundations as
well as State Government funded bodies. The
assaults on the industry are constant and quite
often use questionable statistical information
to support their arguments. They will always
draw a long bow to link our industry with all
the troubles of society.
It’s ironic that if we were to operate a
misinformation campaign at all I am sure we
would be called to account and consequences
would apply, yet there is little scrutiny for
them. Remembering quite often it is our
members’ taxes that help fund the very groups
that would see our industry disappear in the
books of history. But the frustrating factor with
this lobby group is they will not engage with
the Liquor Stores Association in dialogue for us
both to work towards harm minimisation. We
are all on the same page but the anti-alcohol
lobby refuse to read it.
WHAT IS YOUR MESSAGE TO
RETAILERS LOOKING TO BECOME
A MEMBER OF LSA WA?
There are many benefits to being a member of
the LSA WA but the main one is that when you
have an issue, we will be there working with
you to find a solution. As a member of LSA WA
you will never be on your own. Quite simply,
together as a united group, we can encourage
change and protect our industry through the
strength of size.
WHAT IS ONE ISSUE YOU’D LIKE
TO SEE URGENTLY ADDRESSED BY
We would like to see a greater focus on
prevention rather than prosecution. We all
know within every community there are
people who have addictions to drugs and/
For too long as a community we have been
relying on the band aid approach of restrictions
to solve these problems. And they do have
some effect in the short-term. But there is no
We need the focus not to be fixed on the
police being the solution. If more attention
and resources were in place on the ground
through treatment rather than building bigger
prisons, then the problem would have a greater
opportunity to be reduced in size.
No person wants to be addicted to anything.
As a community, we should be giving these
people a hand to get their lives back on track.
Police, health, child protection, mental health,
and the liquor industry need to work together
to bring about significant change. We all need
to have this conversation today.
HOW DO YOU VIEW YOUR ROLE IN
We need a strong voice so that not just one
side of the conversation is heard. We need the
ability to challenge the false or misleading
statements that are released to hurt our
industry. We are here to let our elected officials
hear our position on issues affecting us.
WHAT DO YOU ANTICIPATE
YOUR MAIN CHALLENGES AND
OPPORTUNITIES WILL BE IN THE
To be honest probably all the above will be
the challenges, and the opportunities will be to
eliminate them one at a time.
LOU SPAGNOLO, PRESIDENT
“We need a strong
voice so that not
just one side of
is heard. We need
the ability to
challenge the false
statements that are
released to hurt
Links Archive NLN DEC 2016 NLN March 2017 Navigation Previous Page Next Page