Say no to liquor bids

Three new ap­pli­ca­tions made

South Waikato News - - NEWS -

‘‘Glory to God in the high­est, and on earth peace, and good­will to­wards men.’’

YEAH RIGHT the Tui Bill­board would say of this lat­est set of liquor li­cence ap­pli­ca­tions made by the di­rec­tors of Mokosoi Hold­ings Ltd Tau­ranga.

Their re­quest right on Christ­mas for three liquor li­cences while so­cial ser­vice providers in Toko­roa are work­ing flat out at their busiest time of year is an out­rage. The fam­i­lies in our com­mu­nity are un­der huge stress over the need to pro­vide gifts and food, try­ing to pay the bills and then cater for fam­ily, friends and those un­ex­pected unan­nounced vis­i­tors.

Then there are those who have lived on a ben­e­fit or a low in­come that have strug­gled and got fur­ther be­hind in pay­ing the ever-in­creas­ing rent, power, fuel and food bills. Many are at break­ing point. They were told to plan and to bud­get by wellmean­ing friends and ser­vices; but now be­cause of hard eco­nomic times and lack of work, they bud­geted, they lived fru­gally but there was still noth­ing left in the cup­board.

Many will seek so­lace and com­fort in al­co­hol or other recre­ational drugs, which boils over into fam­ily vi­o­lence, abuse and ne­glect of part­ners and chil­dren caus­ing the un­rav­el­ling of the fam­ily unit. Ask Toko­roa po­lice; in our com­mu­nity of Toko­roa, Pu­taruru and Man­gakino the past two years have seen Vi­o­lence in a pub­lic place 155 in­ci­dents; Vi­o­lence Dwelling 559; Vi­o­lence other 40; Vi­o­lence Fam­ily 780; Vi­o­lence Sex­ual 41. (NZ Po­lice stats). These are the sober­ing facts.

Not much peace or good­will to­wards men in these sit­u­a­tions.

South Waikato has 20 off li­cences, 24 on li­cences and 18 club li­cences, surely it is time to say ‘‘It’s not OK’’ to this con­tin­u­ing al­co­hol-fu­elled vi­o­lence in our com­mu­nity.

The Sale of Liquor Act 1989 has at its cen­tre the ob­ject of the Act which states: ‘‘The ob­ject is to es­tab­lish a rea­son­able sys­tem of con­trol, over the sale and sup­ply of liquor to the pub­lic, WITH THE AIM OF THE RE­DUC­TION OF LIQUOR ABUSE; so far as can be achieved by leg­isla­tive moves.’’

We ask the coun­cil and the Liquor Li­cens­ing Au­thor­ity to take the so­cial harm sta­tis­tics into ac­count as they have done in New Ply­mouth and Tu­rangi de­ci­sions. I am ask­ing, although it’s a busy time of year, can the res­i­dents and ratepay­ers of our com­mu­nity please send your let­ter of ob­jec­tion to the South Waikato District Coun­cil be­fore Christ­mas Day.

Our prayer is for a safe and healthy com­mu­nity. My prayer is that you have a blessed and safe Christ­mas with fam­ily and friends.

Colin Bri­dle (Dip Soc Wrk; Dip Man) Man­ager Com­mu­nity Min­istries, The Sal­va­tion Army Toko­roa. Ph 07 886-9812, Email col­in_bri­dle@nzf.sal­va­tion army.org

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