Welcome to Alcohol Action Station edition #119
Issue no. 119
In this Issue
  • Welcome to Alcohol Action Station
  • Did you know?
  • New Phase of Alcohol. Think Again ‘I See’ Campaign
  • WA Young People Are Drinking Less
  • Invitation: Advocacy Workshop
  • Rum Ad Before ‘Dora the Explorer’: Not a Concern!?
  • Calls for Changes To alcohol tax
  • Alcohol in the Media
  • The Facts 

Welcome to Alcohol Action Station

A new report No way to ignore it”: Calls to remove alcohol advertising from public transport released by the Alcohol Advertising Review Board shows that alcohol advertising on public transport sites is widespread despite substantial community concern about young people’s exposure to alcohol promotion on these sites.Image of AARB public transport report cover
A review of Perth bus stop ads by the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth found that 53% of the 584 bus stop ads identified were for alcohol, junk food and sugary drinks. One in seven of the ads were for alcohol products, including beer, whisky, gin, liqueur and vodka.
Since its launch in 2012, the Alcohol Advertising Review Board has received 130 complaints about alcohol ads placed on public transport and transit stops from all around Australia (18% of all complaints).
“There are no effective controls on the placement of outdoor alcohol ads in Australia. The current voluntary codes are totally inadequate,” said Julia Stafford of the McCusker Centre.
The Alcohol Advertising Review Board has called on each State and Territory Government to amend advertising agency contracts or existing legislation to prohibit the display of alcohol advertising on public transport and transit stops, including on buses, trains and trams, and at train stations and bus stops.
Want more?

Read the report, “No way to ignore it”: Calls to remove alcohol advertising from public transport.
Read the results of the review of Perth bus stop ads.
Read the
media release, media coverage here and here, and a DrinkTank blog post.
Until next time,
Danica Keric, McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth
Megan De Piazz, Injury Control Council of WA

did you know?

Outdoor advertising cannot be switched off, avoided or ignored, and it is impossible to control who views outdoor alcohol ads.

Source: “No way to ignore it”: The case for removing alcohol ads from public transport.

Encourage others to take action on alcohol. Forward this to a friend.
Forward to a Friend

New Phase of Alcohol.Think Again ‘I See’ Campaign

The latest phase of the Alcohol. Think AgainI See” campaign was launched on the weekend.
“I See” is part of the Parents, Young People and Alcohol campaign which aims to promote the expert guidelines that for under 18s, no alcohol is the safest choice.Screenshots of ATA I See campaign
The new phase of the campaign features the original TV ad with a range of experts who witness young people experiencing harms caused by alcohol, and new TV ads that focus on the perspectives of the school psychologist and the doctor.

Launching the campaign, Mental Health Minister Helen Morton said the campaign will "highlight the risks of underage drinking, including long-term brain damage, injury and the consequences of poor decisions.”
Research shows the campaign messages are getting through. The majority of WA parents (96%) understand that for under 18s, no alcohol is the safest choice.
A parent engagement kit for secondary schools has also been released. It "offers parents and school communities resources and practical tips to reinforce the message that it is safest to prevent and delay alcohol consumption by young people," the Minister said. Check it out here [PDF 4.6 MB].

Want more?
Read the Minister’s media release.
Check out the latest phase of the campaign, including the TV ads and supporting resources.

WA Young People Are Drinking Less

The release of the Alcohol. Think Again campaign provided an encouraging glimpse at findings from the Australian School Students Alcohol and Drug survey.
The survey showed that fewer WA 12 to 17 year olds drank alcohol in 2014 compared with 2011, and fewer drank at risky levels. WA young people’s drinking rates are also at their lowest in a decade.
Mental Health Minister Helen Morton said, “The latest survey of Western Australian school students shows the proportion choosing not to drink alcohol has more than doubled from 12.3 per cent in 2005 to 31.5 per cent in 2014.”
"Messages are getting through to older teenagers, particularly boys, with four times more 16 and 17-year-old boys choosing not to drink in 2014 compared with 2005 and those who did drink, doing so less often," the Minister said.
The Minister said the results of the survey indicate that harm-reduction messages are helping change young people’s and parents’ decisions and behaviours. “This reflects the important contribution prevention campaigns are making in targeting young people and parents with the message that drinking at a young age is a risk to their health and wellbeing," she said.
Want more?
Read the Minister’s media release for a summary of the survey results.

Invitation: Advocacy Workshop

You are invited to a grassroots media and advocacy workshop presented by Professor Mike Daube and Julia Stafford (McCusker Centre) and Prevention and Media staff from the Mental Health Commission. Image of working together
The workshop will provide participants with a broad overview of how to build positive relationships with local media and introduce a variety of advocacy strategies to assist in reducing the harms associated with AOD use in their communities. Topics will include: what is advocacy; challenges and opportunities; developing key messages; getting the most out of paid and unpaid media and how to effectively link with state-wide media campaigns at the local level.
When:                  Thursday 7 April 2016, 9am-4.30pm
Venue:                  Mental Health Commission – 7 Field St, Mt Lawley
For more information and to register, please visit the Mental Health Commission website, contact the Workforce Development Administration Officers on 9370 0368 or 9370 0327, or email

We look forward to seeing you there!

Rum Ad Before Dora the Explorer: Not a Concern!?

You may remember that last year a rum ad was played before a ‘Dora the Explorer’ kid’s video on YouTube.
After initially losing the complaint for 3 months, the industry body rImage of Sydney Health Law blog postesponsible for self-regulating alcohol advertising (ABAC) has finally decided that the complaint cannot be reviewed as it falls outside of their code. The code only covers the content of alcohol ads, whereas the complaint related to its placement.

The father of the 3 year old girl who was watching the video, Professor Roger Magnusson from Sydney Health Law, is, rightly, outraged by this decision. “It’s official.  Spamming children with alcohol advertisements does not breach the ABAC Code, the alcohol industry’s swiss-cheese voluntary standard for alcohol advertising regulation,” he wrote in a recent blog post about the decision.
“The Chief Adjudicator of the ABAC Complaints Panel has ruled that the Panel will not consider a complaint about Diageo Australia [the rum advertiser] spamming a 3 year-old with a Bundaberg Rum video-advert when she clicked on a Dora the Explorer video on a children’s YouTube channel,” he wrote.
The Alcohol Advertising Review Board Panel (the alternative alcohol ad review system run by health groups) found that the ad breached its code.
Want more?
Read the Sydney Health Law blog.
What can I do?
Remember, if you see an alcohol ad that concerns you, let the Alcohol Advertising Review Board know.

Calls for Changes To Alcohol Tax

The Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE) has Image of FARE pre-budget submission called for changes to Australia’s alcohol tax system in their pre-budget submission. FARE said that modest but necessary changes would deliver a $2.9 billion revenue boost and an even greater windfall for the health of the nation.
Economic modelling found that a 10% increase in all alcohol excise, combined with changes that would tax wine more equitably, would result in a 9.4% reduction in alcohol consumption, with a corresponding reduction in alcohol harms.
FARE Chief Executive Michael Thorn says, “Reforming the alcohol tax system should be a no-brainer. In fact nine separate Government reviews have recommended we do exactly that.”
Want more?
Read FARE’s Pre-Budget 2016-17 submission and the media release on their website.

New report: Latest stats on underage drinking

Fact check: Do world class cities lack lockout laws?
ABC, 16 March 2016
Is there a lack of laws similar to Sydney’s lockout laws in comparable international cities?
Licensed venues group concerned over Calvary drug and alcohol recording trial
Canberra Times, 15 March 2016
The association representing Canberra’s licensed venues has concerns about a pilot study designed to record the drug and alcohol intake of every patient in Calvary Hospital’s emergency department.
Australia’s drinking culture has role in sexual assaults at universities, say experts
The Guardian, 9 March 2016
Tackling Australia’s toxic drinking culture and broader inequality between men and women is crucial to eradicating sexual assault on university campuses, experts in the sector say.
Increasing alcohol tax the best way to fix budget deficit, says report
The Guardian, 8 March 2016
Increasing the price of alcohol, particularly cheap wine and cider, would boost tax revenue by $2.9bn annually and be a boon to public health, says a new report.
Cost of drink driving on ACT roads revealed by ACT government forensic report
Canberra Times, 7 March 2016
More than 60% of drivers who tested positive for alcohol consumption after accidents on Canberra roads have recording blood-alcohol readings double the legal limit since 2002. 

The Facts

Removal of alcohol advertising from public transport is strongly supported in Australia and around the world:
  1. 72% of WA adults support removing alcohol advertising from buses and bus stops to reduce young people’s exposure, with only 10% opposed. 
  2. The World Health Organization, the Australian Medical Association, the National Preventative Health Taskforce and other expert groups have recommended restricting alcohol advertising during times and in places which have high exposure to children and young people.
  3. In September 2015, the ACT government announced that alcohol advertising will no longer be allowed on public buses.
  4. Several countries, including Finland, Ireland and numerous jurisdictions within the USA, have policies and legislation around alcohol advertising on public transport and transit stops.
Source: No way to ignore it”: The case for removing alcohol ads from public transport and transit stops. Alcohol Advertising Review Board, March 2016.
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 © 2016 Alcohol Action Station, All rights reserved.

Email Marketing Powered by Mailchimp