Welcome to Alcohol Action Station edition #128
Issue no. 128
In this Issue
  • Welcome to Alcohol Action Station
  • Did you know?
  • Alcohol Brands Move to Snapchat
  • Take Action on Alcohol Advertising!
  • Alcohol and NRL: Still a Concern
  • Alcohol Sponsorship of Grassroots Sport
  • Parents and Young People’s Attitudes On Underage Drinking
  • Alcohol in the News
  • The Facts 

Welcome to Alcohol Action Station

Want to know all about pre-drinking among young risky drinkers?
A new series of bulletins released by the National Drug Research Institute helps shed the light on pre-drinking by young risky drinkers. The bulletins are based on a recent study and include the ‘who’, ‘where’, ‘why’, ‘what’ and ‘how much’ of pre-drinking among the heaviest drinking 20-25% of Australian 16-19 year olds. 
Findings include:Image of YAARS bulletins

  • 43% of young people reported pre-drinking last time they had more than 7 drinks.
  • The main reasons for pre-drinking were: price, to catch up with friends, to get drunk, and to have fun.
  • Common locations for pre-drinking were at a friend’s or acquaintance’s house, followed by the young person’s own home.
  • Young people who reported pre-drinking spent an average of just under 2 hours doing so.
  • Young people had about 6.5 standard drinks while pre-drinking, exceeding the national guidelines for single occasion risky drinking.
  • The most common pre-drinks were spirits, beer and wine.
  • The average amount spent on drinks was $24.

Want more?
Check out the bulletins on the NDRI website, and the journal paper on which the bulletins are based.
Until next time,
Danica Keric, McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth

did you know?

Exposure to alcohol advertising influences young people’s beliefs and attitudes about drinking, and increases the likelihood that adolescents will start to use alcohol and will drink more if they are already using alcohol.
Source: Alcohol Advertising and Young People – MCAAY factsheet.

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Alcohol Brands Move to Snapchat

Alcohol companies are constantly finding new ways to promote their products. In the US, alcohol brands have started advertising on Snapchat, a photo-sharing social media platform popular with young people. It’s likely that alcohol brands  in Australia are considering the platform also.Image of snapchat logo
“Platforms like Snapchat are so popular with young people in particular, it is alarming when we are seeing more alcohol brands move into this space,” said Julia Stafford from the McCusker Centre. “There are no controls on the placement of alcohol ads on social media and as the area keeps growing, such as with the popularity of Snapchat, we are constantly playing catch-up…At this stage, we don’t know anything about how Snapchat plans to “age gate” the ads but what we’ve seen from other social media platforms is their basic age gating methods are fairly crude.”
The McCusker Centre continues to call for legal controls to cover all marketing platforms. “We can’t respond to every new social media platform because they are being created all the time. We shouldn’t be playing catch up – we need effective legal controls to cover all marketing platforms so we don’t have to respond to Snapchat in particular” Ms Stafford said.
What can I do about it?
If you’re concerned about young people’s exposure to alcohol ads, get in touch with the Alcohol Advertising Review Board.
Want more?
Read the full report on AdNews.

Take Action on Alcohol Advertising!

If you see an alcohol ad that concerns you, you can do something about it!
The Alcohol Advertising Review Board (AARB) accepts complaints about alcohol ads from the Australian community. It is a very simple process – we accept complaints by email, an online form or by phone. All we need is a picture or link to the ad and a few sentences on why it concerns you.Image of AARB logo
Check out some recent determinations:
To keep up-to-date on AARB determinations, reports and interesting research, follow @AlcoholAdReview on Twitter.

Alcohol and NRL: Still a Concern

NRL and alcohol have been mentioned many times together, more Image of NRL petitionoften than not in a negative context. “This is a national sporting code which aggressively promotes gambling, junk food and alcohol consumption to the entire nation during prime-time television, watched by adults and children alike, yet is somehow surprised when its players act up off the field,” Michael Thorn from the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education wrote.
You may have seen #BoozeFreeSport, a campaign calling on NRL to remove alcohol ads from the State of Origin. While State of Origin is over for another year, our efforts to remove alcohol promotion from sport should not be.
If you want to catch up on what has happened so far, read:
  • A compilation of everyday Australians’ comments on alcohol sport in response to the Booze Free Sport petition.
  • Michael Thorn’s piece on the growing dissonance between the NRL’s values and its own corporate behaviour; and
  • Kristie Clements’ piece on the shameful ads during the State of Origin broadcast.
Many young people are fans of the sport, and should not be bombarded with alcohol promotion every time they watch the game. Our kids’ sporting idols should not be walking billboards for alcohol companies.

Alcohol Sponsorship of Grassroots Sport

Carl Heslop from the Australian Drug Foundation has looked at the drinking culture permeating Australian sport to the highest levels, and the battle by grassroots clubs to call last drinks on sponsorship and the traditional post-game slab in an article on Croakey.Image of goodsports
“The alcohol industry has put in solid efforts at every level of sport to ensure that advertising messaging reaches us any time we engage with it,” he wrote. “At the grassroots level, clubs and leagues engage alcohol sponsors in a range of ways. Sometimes it is the family owned winery or a small town’s local hotel; but don’t think that the big players ignore opportunities to secure supply deals, jumper sponsorships or advertising through deals and partnerships.”
“Many clubs are actively trying to change their culture and move away from this kind of tradition…Clubs are also challenging themselves more and more about how much alcohol advertising is responsible – and often forgoing easy money in the process.”
“We must support individual clubs in making changes to the things they can control – but we also need to start questioning, advocating and acting for the things that they can’t.”
Want more?
Read Carl’s full article on Croakey.

Parents and Young People’s Attitudes On Underage Drinking

New research from a regional town in NSW explored knowledge, attitudes and experiences of providing alcohol to under 18s among parents and young people.Image of Jones et al paper

What do young people think about teen drinking?
  • Younger teens aged 12-14 viewed drinkers as simply ‘bad’ and non-drinkers as simply ‘good’.
  • Younger teens also believed that ‘good’ parents don’t let their children drink.
  • The older teens expressed more open and accepting views towards drinking. They acknowledged drinkers were often more ‘annoying’, ‘silly’ and ‘aggressive’ while emphasising that drinking could be associated with positive (or neutral) characteristics and outcomes.
  • Among older teens, some thought that the supply of alcohol to teens was ‘bad’ parenting, whereas others saw it as harm minimisation. These older teens also had mixed views of parents who do not provide alcohol. Some viewed this as lack of trust or respect for their children whereas others viewed parental prohibition more positively.
What do the parents think?
  • There was a general consensus among parents that the local teens (especially those aged 16-17 yrs) are drinking. There was also recognition that the child’s peer group was an important influence on their drinking behaviour.
  • Parents believed that while peer pressure and other environmental factors influence teen drinking, parents themselves are also a significant influence either by role modelling or by the degree of parental rules and boundaries.
  • Parents clearly believed that supplying alcohol to teens was inappropriate.
The authors note that while there was general agreement that supplying alcohol to children was not ok, young people and parents believed this only in the context of providing alcohol to get drunk. Most people seemed to think that providing a sip of alcohol on a special occasion is acceptable, despite evidence to the contrary.
Want more?
Read the full paper published in BMC Public Health.

Alcohol in the News

One-punch victim Thomas Kelly’s father says restricting alcohol key to reducing violence
Canberra Times, 20 July 2016
If the ACT wants to reduce late-night violence it should consider following measures introduced in Newcastle and parts of Sydney to reduce availability of alcohol, says the father of Kings Cross one-punch victim Thomas Kelly.
Push for major fines and tougher laws against supplying youths with drinking at private events
Adelaide Now, 17 July 2016
Laws preventing the sale of alcohol to young people should be beefed up to cover “high-risk” events, such as school formal after-parties, and impose fines of up to $5000 for supplying teenagers, a review recommends.  
WA Government has ‘no appetite’ to reduce Kimberley alcohol restrictions: MP
ABC News, 15 July 2016
The West Australian Government has “no appetite” to relax restrictions on takeaway alcohol in Halls Creek and Fitzroy Crossing, according to Child Protection Minister Andrea Mitchell.
Unhealthy sport sponsorship continues to target kids
The Conversation, 13 July 2016
In the final month of the countdown to the Olympic Games, our sports stars are probably not eating and drinking the Games’ sponsors foods.
Queensland’s new liquor laws leading to fewer assaults, police say
ABC News, 11 July 2016
There have been fewer assaults in party precincts over the two weekends since the introduction of new liquor laws, Queensland police say.
It’s time to ban the booze for younger drivers
Herald Sun, 10 July 2016
Opinion: In 1976 it was socially acceptable to have a few drinks, pop the kids in the car and jump behind the wheel.
Court throws out Woolworths’ appeal for Dan Murphy’s liquor store at Coogee
Daily Telegraph: 8 July 2016
Bottle shop giants Dan Murphy’s have lost their bid to open a seven day liquor store on the former Randwick Rugby Club site at Coogee after a legal appeal was rejected.
How alcohol is driving Canberra’s emergency departments to despair
Canberra Times, 7 July 2016
The alcohol epidemic has become a “giant disaster for our society” and alcohol-related harm is now the number one public health issue in Canberra’s emergency departments, a leading specialist says.


The Facts

Leveraging alcohol sponsorship arrangements via associated advertising and promotion is prevalent and strongly embedded in popular sports content. Research into four large televised sporting events in 2010 and 2011 (cricket, AFL, NRL and Melbourne Cup) found:
  1. All of the sports sampled were sponsored to varying degrees by alcohol companies.
  2. Direct alcohol sponsorship exposure, in terms of frequency of stadium signs, announcer voiceovers, player uniforms and branded appearance, was approximately double the number of exposures associated with traditional alcohol advertising.
Source: Kelly et al. Young consumers’ exposure to alcohol sponsorship in sport. International Journal of Sports Marketing & Sponsorship. 2015: 83-102.
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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