Publications & Reports

Self-determination by First Nations Australians in alcohol policy: Lessons from Mbantua/Alice Springs (Northern Territory, Australia).

Stearne AE, Lee KK, Allsop S, Shakeshaft A, Wright M


BACKGROUND: First Nations Australians have an internationally-recognised right to self-determination - a key social determinant of health. The recognition and application of this right varies within different regions and policy contexts but is currently unknown for First Nations Australians' engagement in alcohol policy development. This study seeks to: explore First Nations Australians' experiences of alcohol policy in Central Australia (Northern Territory); and identify how First Nations Australians' right to self-determination can be recognised and applied in the development of alcohol policy in Mbantua/Alice Springs. METHODS: Using a blended yarning and appreciative inquiry approach, 24 interviews were conducted. Interviews were thematically coded in multiple stages, using diagrammatic methods. RESULTS: Four key themes emerged: (i) experiences of purchasing alcohol; (ii)communication of the current alcohol policy; (iii) experiences of policy described by participants (and their community); and (iv) self-determination in alcohol policy. CONCLUSIONS: Current pathways for contributing to alcohol policy have been ineffective in achieving meaningful engagement with Australia’s First Nations community members. This study provides some guidance as to how self-determination can more effectively be incorporated in the development of alcohol policy in the NT.

Link to publisher’s web site


  • Journal: The International Journal of Drug Policy
  • Published: 16/08/2022
  • Volume: 108
  • Pagination: 103822