Booze is expensive in the North, and it's not just the cost of a bottle.
It's costly for the health care system, policing, and all too often it costs people their lives.
CBC North Special Report | Booze Beyond 60°.
The week-long series will look at how alcohol has affected people in all three territories and Northern Quebec. And we'll look at what people and communities are doing to make things better.
Check out the special web coverage here.
One of the first stories in the series Booze Beyond 60° is from Alice Mawdsley, 22.
In 2008 when she was 16, Mawdsley had her whole life in front of her, and alcohol almost about ripped it away.
"I had to re-learn to walk and talk," she said.
The Fort Smith, N.W.T., athlete was out with friends who had been drinking.
She was on an inner tube being towed by a snowmobile when she was slammed into a parked pickup truck.
"Alcohol was the main factor. It was drinking and driving that nearly killed me."
Mawdsley ended up in a coma for three weeks and spent another six months in hospital with a brain injury.
"They didn't think that I'd be able to walk or talk or basically do anything. So all of the things that we take for granted on a daily basis were almost taken away from me completely," she said.
With help from family, Mawdsley picked up the pieces and re-learned everything. Some things are still fuzzy for her – she can’t remember a year of her life surrounding the accident.
Now, she is enrolled in college in Yellowknife. While the brain injury affects her ability to memorize things, she’s never pointed blame.
"It was bad choices. I can't change the bad choices. All I can do is move forward and work hard to not make the same mistakes again," she says.
Northerners spend the most on booze compared to the rest of the country — they spent nearly $100 million last year in the three territories.
Yukoners spend the most per capital on alcohol.
But it’s not just the price of booze — alcohol-fueled problems continually flood the justice and health care systems.
CBC North's series will be a wakeup call to some, and reality for others.