Children’s exposure to alcohol marketing highlights need for National Alcohol Summit

27 Feb 2014

The AMA is calling for immediate action following the release this week of a damning report by the Australian National Preventive Health Agency (ANPHA) showing young people are being exposed to an unprecedented volume and variety of alcohol marketing, despite industry self-regulation. AMA President Dr Steve Hambleton said the existing regulatory regime was badly flawed because it was voluntary, limited in scope, poorly enforced and without meaningful penalties for breaches. 

The AMA called for a National Alcohol Summit in January following a spate of highly-publicised incidents of alcohol-related violence and reports of high numbers of alcohol-related presentations in the nation’s emergency departments.

Dr Hambleton said the AMA wants a whole-of-government approach that looks at harm minimisation, the marketing of alcohol and how young people are exposed to this marketing, pricing and taxation, venue licensing and opening hours. He added that any policy and regulation must be informed by everyday community experience – from police, doctors and other health professionals, drug and alcohol services, teachers, and the families who suffer from alcohol addiction, misuse, and the associated violence and illness.

The AMA will present its views on this issue in a submission to ANPHA as it prepares its final report.

Listen to Dr Hambleton talk about young people being exposed to alcohol advertisements 4BC Brisbane, 24 February 2014:

Media releases.

ANPHA re Alcohol Advertising: The effectiveness of current regulatory codes in addressing community concern draft report.

Image by NeilsPhotography on Flickr, used under Creative Commons licence