Welcome to Alcohol Action Station e-newsletter edition #53
Issue no. 53
In this Issue
  • Welcome to Alcohol Action Station
  • Did you know?
  • National Alliance for Action on Alcohol Call for Policy Reform 
  • Update on Game Changer Campaign
  • End the Lethal Combination of Sport and Alcohol
  • Time to Cut Ties Between Alcohol and Sport
  • Adelaide United Reunited With Coopers
  • Q&A: Banning Alcohol Sponsorship of Sport
  • DrinkWise and State of Origin
  • Take Action on Alcohol Advertising
  • Alcohol in the Media
  • The Facts

Welcome to Alcohol Action Station

Alcohol sponsorship and promotion during sport has been in the spotlight this past fortnight, in part because of the WA Police Commissioner, Karl O’Callaghan, speaking out about alcohol advertising in sport at the National Alliance for Action on Alcohol forum. More on this below.
Several alcohol-related incidents involving high profile sportspeople have helped keep the issue in the spotlight. When Queensland Maroons’ coach Mal Meninga spoke about being asked to leave an inner-city Brisbane bar, he held a press conference surrounded by XXXX beer logos - a Maroons sponsor. We counted 19 XXXX logos!
Community discussion has been sparked about the appropriateness of associating alcohol and sport. When asked if Origin was linked too heavily with alcohol advertising and promotion, Mal Meninga said, “That’s something our administrators have to look at”.
Research shows that alcohol sponsorship increases the drinking and hazardous use of alcohol among those sponsored. Check out this article for a short summary of some recent incidents.
While major sports are saturated with alcohol sponsorship, are these appropriate role models for our kids?
Until next time,
Danica Keric, McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth
Megan Farley, Injury Control Council WA

did you know?

Children absorb sponsorship messages: 76% of children aged 5 to 12 years were able to correctly match at least one sport with its relevant sponsor. Encourage others to take action on alcohol. Forward this to a friend.
Forward to a Friend

National Alliance for Action on Alcohol Call for Policy Reform 

The National Alliance for Action on Alcohol (NAAA) launched their 2013 Federal Election Policy Statement – Healthier Families, Safer Communities – at Parliament House in Canberra on 19 June. NAAA_Policy_Statement
The NAAA’s Federal Election Policy Statement includes a 5-point plan to reduce alcohol-related harm in Australia:
  1. Reduce harmful drinking through changes to alcohol taxation
  2. Protect children from alcohol marketing and promotions
  3. Improve safety and cut the costs to communities caused by alcohol
  4. Give individuals information to make healthier and safer choices
  5. Provide national leadership and motivation for action
WA Police Commissioner Karl O’Callaghan gave the keynote address at the event where he spoke about the need to address alcohol advertising during sport.
Commissioner O’Callaghan talked about the impact exposure to alcohol advertising and associating alcohol and sport have on our young people. “Generally it [alcohol] cannot be advertised before 8.30pm at night and for good reason. But we need to address the loophole in the Commercial Television Industry Code of Practice because currently alcohol advertising can be shown before 8:30pm on weekends and public holidays as an accompaniment to live sporting events. This is problematic because these are the times when children and young people may be exposed to advertising and sponsorship”, he said. 
“Greater control over alcohol advertising is not, in itself the silver bullet but cultural change has to start a long way back from regulation and punishment”, Commissioner O’Callaghan said.
Check out the Police Commissioner’s speech on Croakey, an edited version on Drink Tank and a video of the speech on vimeo.
What can I do?
Write to the Minister for Mental Health and Ageing, Senator the Hon Jacinta Collins and the Minister for Health and Medical Research, the Hon Tanya Plibersek to show your support for the Police Commissioner’s comments and the NAAA’s call for action. 

Read some related media here, here and here.

Update on Game Changer Campaign

Game Changer – the community-led campaign which seeks to tackle unhealthy advertising in sport – now has a billboard at Hobart Airport which is hoped to be the first of many!
Game Changer is an initiative developed Aaron Schultz, a father of two who has serious concerns about the way that Australians are being targeted by alcohol and junk food advertising through sport.
If you are concerned about alcohol advertising in sport, sign the Game Changer petition here.
For more information head to the Game Changer website.

End the Lethal Combination of Sport and Alcohol

“What a national shame that [sport] has sold its soul and players to the alcohol industry”.
This is what Professors Fiona Stanley and Mike Daube wrote in an opinion piece recently published in the Sydney Morning Herald.
“We see regular reports of top sports stars putting themselves and others at risk while drunk – yet appearing on TV in alcohol-sponsored events, and even wearing the alcohol logos”, they wrote.
“We can either accept the toll of the binge-drinking culture on our young people - sports players and spectators - or we can take a stand. Ending alcohol sponsorship is an excellent place to start, and it will make a difference.”
What do you think? Let us know your thoughts.

Time to Cut Ties Between Alcohol and Sport

Ever thought about why it can be so hard convincing decision makers to implement an initiative even when there is strong public support? Part of the answer is in an article written by Professor Rob Donovan for The Conversation.Cricket_VB_ad
Prof Donovan discusses the impact alcohol marketing - including advertising, sponsorship and merchandising – has on young people, the current regulatory system which is failing to protect our children, and how alcohol advertising is normalising booze.
As momentum grows for a ban on alcohol advertising during live sport, Prof Donovan says it’s time to ‘cut the ties between alcohol and sport’ and considers why the alcohol industry is being let off lightly.
To read more, visit The Conversation.

Adelaide United Reunited With Coopers

adelaide_unitedDespite an agreement between the Federal government and Football Federation Australia (FFA) that there would be no alcohol advertising during soccer games, Coopers Brewery has used a loophole to seal a deal for naming rights on Hindmarsh Stadium, the home of the Adelaide United soccer team.

Leading alcohol advertising expert, Lance Barrie, says the deal is in breach of the spirit of the agreement between the Federal government and FFA and that it’s a ‘slap in the face’ to soccer and the Federal government.
Any form of alcohol advertising – from shirt-front sponsorships to stadium naming rights – would promote alcohol consumption, Barrie said. “It goes completely against why ANPHA [Federal government] put these regulations in the first place. The regulations are there to protect young people from alcohol advertising. It’s directly going against the body of evidence”, he said.
Want more?
Read media coverage of the issue here and here.

Q&A: Banning Alcohol Sponsorship of Sport

On 17 June, ABC’s Q&A asked panellists Kate Lundy, Barnaby Joyce, Paul Kelly, Robert Manne, and Professor Fiona Stanley for their thoughts on alcohol sponsorship of sport and whether they think it should be banned.
To listen to what the panellists said, check out Episode 20 of ABC’s Q&A. You can download the full episode here.

DrinkWise and State of Origin

If you watched the State of Origin game last week you couldn’t have missed the alcohol advertising. Buried among the sea of alcohol promotion was a logo of the alcohol industry-supported group DrinkWise telling viewers to ‘Get the Facts’. NRL_State_of_Origin_DrinkWise
Read about public health experts’ concerns about DrinkWise here and here [PDF 111 KB].
Given the masses of alcohol promotion associated with the State of Origin games, Drinkwise’s decision to get involved begs the question - If Drinkwise are serious about preventing harm from alcohol, why don’t they support removing alcohol promotion in sport where young people will be exposed?
What do you think? Let us know your thoughts at

Take Action on Alcohol Advertising

Seen an alcohol ad that concerned you? Contact the Alcohol Advertising Review Board!

AARBThe Alcohol Advertising Review Board accepts complaints from the Australian community about alcohol ads and aims to provide independent review of alcohol advertising in Australia.
Making a complaint is simple – just send a pic or link to the advertisement (if you can) and briefly describe why it concerns you. At you will find an online form and contact details to submit complaints.
Check out some of the recent determinations by the Alcohol Advertising Review Board in response to alcohol ad complaints from the Australian community:
To stay up to date on all Alcohol Advertising Review Board determinations, follow @AlcoholAdReview on Twitter.

Alcohol in the Media

Food outlets take advantage of new laws allowing the service of alcohol without food
The Sunday Times, 30 June 2013
Food outlets have not wasted any time taking advantage of new laws that make it easier for them to serve alcohol without making their customers order a meal first.

Push by health advocates to ban alcohol advertising online to protect children
The Sunday Times, 30 June 2013
Health advocates want the Federal Government to ban the advertising of alcohol and other harmful products on websites that attract children.
Demand for action over alcohol and violence
The Sydney Morning Herald, 30 June 2013
Seventy-six per cent of people believe Australia’s problem with alcohol-related violence will worsen over the next five years, according to a survey by public health groups.
No longer barracking for booze
The Age, 29 June 2013
My dad played footy in the good old days - back when AFL was VFL and pre-match meals consisted of steak and eggs.
Drinking on the job: what is acceptable?
The Age, 24 June 2013
It’s been years since Mad Men-style drinking was tolerated on the job, but in workplaces across Australia, there remains a wide variation in where, when and how much alcohol is allowed.
Alcohol-fuelled accidents rife after midnight
The Daily Telegraph, 24 June 2013
Even in the very wet and cold, trouble starts after midnight.
West Australian convenience stores make submission to sell alcohol
The Sunday Times, 22 June 2013
Corner stores want to sell liquor to make up for money lost because of plain cigarette packaging.
Opposition leader calls for Parliamentary forum on alcohol related violence
ABC News, 21 June 2013
The State Opposition leader, Mark McGowan, is urging the Premier to hold a community summit to address concerns about rising levels of anti-social behaviour.
Is the NRL’s stand on booze hypocritical?
The Australian, 21 June 2013
When Queensland coach Mal Meninga went looking for a drink behind a bar this week he unwittingly thrust the role of alcohol sponsorship of rugby league back into the spotlight.

The Facts

  1. Over 18% of the entire broadcast of an NRL grand final match featured some form of alcohol marketing.
  2. Only 5% of the marketing was in commercial breaks.
  3. 95% of alcohol marketing was integrated into the game through stadium signage, electronic banners, announcements, and logos on players’ uniforms.
Source: Cancer Council Victoria 2013. New Research: AFL/NRL broadcasts one long booze ad with a bit of sport.
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.

Copyright © 2013 Alcohol Action Station, All rights reserved.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp