Welcome to Alcohol Action Station e-newsletter edition #34
Issue no. 34
In this Issue
  • welcome to alcohol action station
  • did you know?
  • join the perth pregnant pause flash mob
  • abc background briefing: the big binge
  • australian drug information network
  • outdoor alcohol ads: your children see these adverts
  • alcohol advertising review board: recent determinations
  • alcohol labelling petition: help reach 1000 signatures
  • alcohol in the media
  • the facts

Welcome to Alcohol Action Station

The New South Wales Government is conducting an inquiry into matters relating to the provision of alcohol to minors by parents and guardians in NSW. The focus of the inquiry is secondary supply legislation.
In announcing the inquiry the Legislative Assembly Social Policy Committee Chair said, “The Committee will examine the sufficiency of provisions of the Liquor Act 2007 with regard to persons selling, supplying alcohol to people under the age of 18 years, including in homes, parks, halls and public places. It will also examine the appropriateness of provisions that ensure a person must not supply liquor to a minor on any premises other than licensed premises unless the person is a parent or guardian of the minor.”

Secondary supply legislation has been in place in NSW since 2007. This legislation states that a person must not supply liquor to a minor on premises other than licensed premises, unless the person is the parent or guardian of the minor. It is a defence to prosecution for supplying liquor to a minor or obtaining liquor on behalf of a minor if the defendant was authorised to do so by the minor’s parent or guardian.
The submissions to the inquiry make for very interesting reading for those interested in the role of parents in issues around alcohol and young people, and provide information that will be valuable to advocacy activities towards secondary supply legislation in WA.
Selected key points of interest in the inquiry submissions include:
  • The evidence tells us that what parents do, how they communicate their expectations to their children and whether they supply alcohol does influence their children’s choices. [National Drug Research Institute submission]
  • It is clear from the literature that early onset of alcohol use in particular is associated with significant alcohol related harm to children including risky drinking and higher levels of lifetime use. [NSW Commission for Children and Young People submission]
  • While the NSW Liquor Act 2007 provides a legal framework for enforcement, this will not sufficiently curb all harmful alcohol use by young people. Rather, the legislation signals an important intent and works to provide support for parents, especially in their efforts to reduce young people’s access to alcohol. [VicHealth submission]
  • Given the difficulties associated with enforcement, it is possible that the greatest merit of such legislation would be in any contribution it might make to raising parental and community awareness of the harmful impact of alcohol consumption on children, including through secondary supply. To achieve this any legislative change would need to be accompanied by a public awareness campaign explaining the rationale. [NSW Commission for Children and Young People submission]
  • The ADF believes additional protection from alcohol related harm should be provided to minors in New South Wales in the form of a requirement that supply of alcohol to a minor must be undertaken in a responsible manner and in responsible circumstances. [Australian Drug Foundation submission]
Full submissions to the NSW Government inquiry can be accessed here.
Until next time,
Julia Stafford, McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth
Elecia Wheat, Injury Control Council of WA

did you know?

In 2008, 40.7% of WA 12-17 year old school students who drank alcohol in the past week obtained their last alcoholic beverage from their parents.
Source: Haynes et al. (2010). Australian School Student Alcohol and Drug Survey: Alcohol Report 2008 - WA results. Drug and Alcohol Office.

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Join the Perth Pregnant Pause Flash Mob

YouTube FASD flash mobEver wanted to be part of a flash mob?
NOFASARD, with support from Local Drug Action Groups Inc and the National Party, are organising Perth's first ‘Pregnant Pause’ to remind everyone that the safest choice is no alcohol if you are pregnant or planning to be pregnant for the prevention of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).
When: 1.09pm on Sunday 9 September
Where: Murray Street Mall, Perth.
What’s involved: Bring friends and strike a pose with an inflated balloon up your shirt to give yourself a ‘pregnant’ look and freeze for 9 minutes.
Register by email at, by text to 0429 942 947 or look for the Esperance Local Drug Action Group stand in Murray St Mall on the day.
For more information, download the flyer. [pdf 310KB]
Want to know more about NOFASARD? Visit

ABC Background Briefing: The Big Binge

ABC Radio National’s Background Briefing program recently focused on alcohol-related violence in Australia.

In the hour-long program, reporter Di Martin spoke with a wide of relevant professionals and community members including:
  • Chris Sidoti, head of New South Wales’ liquor licensing authority.
  • Michael Thorn, CEO, Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education.
  • Medical professionals including Dr Paul Haber, Sydney’s Royal Prince Alfred Hospital, Dr Gordian Fulde, St Vincent’s Emergency Department, and Alex Peters, Ambulance New South Wales.
  • Police officers in Sydney and Melbourne, and New South Wales Police Association president, Scott Webber.
  • Alcohol researchers including Professor Robin Room and Michael Livingstone, Turning Point Alcohol and Drug Centre in Melbourne, and Kypros Kypri, alcohol researcher at Newcastle University.
  • Alcohol industry representatives including Denita Wawn, CEO, Brewers Association of Australia and New Zealand, and hotel owners.
  • Don Weatherburn, head of the Bureau of Crime Statistics, NSW.
  • Suzie Matthews, Sydney City Council.
  • Concerned residents.
Visit the Radio National website to listen to the program, read the transcript or find out more.

Australian Drug Information Network

Australia’s leading alcohol and drug search directory - Australian Drug Information Network (ADIN) - has relaunched with a new look and improved functionality.
At ADIN you will find reliable information on alcohol, other drugs and mental health, with links to treatment services, research, statistics, guidelines, journals, policy, campaigns, events, curriculum, professional development opportunities and more. 
New ADIN features include:
•    5-star ratings, making it easy to find quality results
•    A searchable Australian help and support services directory
•    New search-by-tag functionality

With results from over 1800 professionally rated websites, ADIN allows you to confidently search for accurate information on alcohol and other drugs.
ADIN is especially for health professionals, educators, researchers, parents, students, people who use alcohol and other drugs, and their friends and families, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, people from diverse cultural backgrounds, and people living in rural and remote locations. 
Explore the Australian Drug Information Network.

Outdoor Alcohol Ads: Your Children See These Adverts

AARB image When your children travel to and from school, or are playing in the local playground, do you expect them to be exposed to alcohol advertising? You may be surprised at just how many outdoor alcohol ads are placed in close proximity to places where children play and congregate.
The Alcohol Advertising Review Board (AARB) Code states alcohol ads should not be placed in locations where young people are likely to be exposed, and should not be placed within 500m of schools.
Earlier this year, a concerned community member contacted the AARB to say they’d seen a bus shelter advertising vodka and alcopops – right next to a children’s playground. The advertiser was notified of the complaint, and they removed the advertisement the following day. This is a great example of how one community member voicing their concern can help prevent young people from being exposed to alcohol advertising. Want to know more? Read the full determination report.
Complaints have also been lodged regarding alcohol ads on billboards near a high school in Perth, WA and close to a primary school in Moorine Rock, WA.
We encourage you to keep an eye out for outdoor alcohol ads in your community. If you see an alcohol ad that concerns you, contact the Alcohol Advertising Review Board.

Alcohol Advertising Review Board: Recent Determinations

AARB imageCheck out some of the recent determinations by the Alcohol Advertising Review Board in response to alcohol ad complaints from the Australian community:
Seen an alcohol ad that doesn’t sit right with you? Visit the Alcohol Advertising Review Board website to submit a complaint.

Alcohol Labelling Petition: Help Reach 1000 Signatures

The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) has launched an online petition calling on the Chair of the Legislative and Governance Forum on Food Regulation, the Hon Catherine King, to agree to implement mandatory, evidence-based alcohol labels in Australia.
More than 800 people have signed the petition and hundreds more have visited the FARE website to find out about the industry’s inadequate voluntary regime.
FARE’s goal is to reach 1000 signatures by 13 September - the day they take the petition to Parliament House to meet with Catherine King.
You can help FARE reach their target of 1000 signatures!
What you can do:
1.      Sign the petition to show the Federal Government that you support mandatory, independently regulated alcohol labels.
2.      Invite your colleagues, friends and family to sign the petition.
3.      Like the campaign on Facebook and Tweet about the campaign to your followers.

Alcohol in the Media

Drug youth face early ageing
The West Australian, 1 September 2012
Young people who are heavy users of cannabis, amphetamines and alcohol risk having the ageing brains of 80-year-olds, increasing their risk of stroke and dementia, according to experts.
Parents could be promoting risky drinking
Newcastle Herald, 1 September 2012
Parents who supply teenagers with alcohol in a bid to manage their introduction to liquor are potentially fuelling risky drinking practices, Newcastle researchers have found.
Schoolies choosing charity over chunder, 30 August 2012
Schoolies are increasingly shunning boozy Gold Coast celebrations in favour of alcohol free or volunteering holidays overseas, with travel companies adding new tours to cater to the growing demand.
Push to triple cask wine price
The Mercury, 29 August 2012
It is possible to exceed the healthy drinking limit of two drinks a day by spending just 50c on cask wine, says a study that calls for an end to the discount tax rate on wine.
Online liquor sales raise age fears
The West Australian, 27 August 2012
The online sale of alcohol will come under scrutiny as part of a broader review of the Liquor Control Act amid concerns juveniles can get booze without age verification. WA Police Commissioner Karl O'Callaghan raised concerns over the online sale of alcohol after he was asked whether he was 18 only at the final stage of placing an order.
Service workers back NSW drink regulations
Herald Sun, 25 August 2012
Measures to restrict the sale of alcohol and trading hours for licensed venues must be adopted across NSW, a group of emergency service workers says. The Last Drinks coalition, comprised of nurses, doctors, police and paramedics, wants the government to adopt all 10 points from the plan developed by the Foundation of Alcohol Research and Education (FARE).
Canberra shuns tighter rein on outdoor advertising
Sydney Morning Herald, 24 August 2012
The federal government has rejected key recommendations from an outdoor advertising inquiry, baulking at calls for greater regulation of racist or sexualised images in ads and tougher scrutiny of alcohol ads.
Pregnancy alcohol message ignored
The West Australian, 23 August 2012
Nearly one in five people thinks it is OK for women to drink a small amount of alcohol while pregnant but most disagree, a survey has found.
Experts blast new spirits keg
The West Australian, 22 August 2012
Health experts have dubbed a new "party starter" spirits and mixer keg as "alcopops on tap", saying it is irresponsible as concerns about binge drinking rise.
Sport fans facing booze fines
The West Australian, 22 August 2012
Sporting fans face fines of up to $2000 if they smuggle booze into a range of major Perth sporting arenas under a State Government crackdown on alcohol-fuelled anti-social behaviour.

The Facts

Of WA 12-17 year old school students who drank alcohol in the last week, the main sources of their last alcoholic drink were:
  1. Parents (40.7%)
  2. Friend (20.9%)
  3. Someone else (15%)
  4. Siblings (10.5%)
  5. Retail – purchased alcohol for themselves (7%)
  6. Took from home (6.1%)
Please note. This is a self-report survey and differences were identified between males and females, and at different ages.
Source: Haynes et al. (2010). Australian School Student Alcohol and Drug Survey: Alcohol Report 2008 - WA results. Drug and Alcohol Office.
Alcohol Action Station aims to provide the WA community with the tools to take action to reduce harms from alcohol among young people. It is provided by the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth in association with the Injury Control Council of WA. You are receiving this email because you have subscribed to receive Alcohol Action Station fortnightly e‐newsletters and urgent bulletins.

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