Arctic Canadian community ponders bylaw to curb public drunkenness

Pangnirtung, Nunavut. This predominantly Inuit community is looking to tackle the problem of public drunkenness. Radio Canada Internatioanal. Dry hamlet seeks way to keep binge drinkers from bothering community

The hamlet council in the community of Pangnirtung in Canada’s eastern Arctic territory of Nunavut, is planning to introduce a new public nuisance bylaw to try to curb the high number of drunken incidents.

Pangnirtung is a “dry” community, meaning alcohol is prohibited, but it’s still getting into the hamlet.

The bylaw will be introduced at the hamlet council meeting next week.

“What we’re seeing more and more is people binge drinking — getting a bottle in, drinking the whole thing down — and then becoming intensely drunk and out of it for the next 12 hours, wandering around town, knocking on doors, harassing people and doing the kind of things in general that drunks tend to do,” said Senior Administrative Officer Ron Mongeau.

Mongeau said the goal is to force intoxicated people to stay behind closed doors and not affect the life and activities of other people in the community.

If passed, fines would start at $250 for a first offence and go as high as $1,000 for third and subsequent offences.

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