Stop advertising alcohol on public transport: new report calls for government action

A new report from the Alcohol Advertising Review Board (AARB) calls on state and territory governments to remove alcohol advertising from public transport.

The report, ‘No way to ignore it: The case for removing alcohol ads from public transport’, highlights the extent of alcohol advertising on public transport and transit stops in Australia, the substantial community concern around young people’s exposure to alcohol promotion on these sites, and what state/territory and local governments can do.

The report was released alongside findings from an audit of Perth bus stop ads by the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth. The audit found that 53% of the 584 bus stop ads identified were for alcohol, junk food and sugary drinks.

The report has been sent to all state and territory transport and health ministers, and relevant Federal Ministers, calling on them to amend advertising contracts or existing legislation to prohibit alcohol ads on buses, trains and trams, and at train stations and bus stops. In September last year, the ACT became the first – and so far the only – jurisdiction to impose a ban on alcohol advertising on public transport.

For further information:

Australia’s alcohol advertising regulations are a “disgrace”: weakened alcohol advertising rules prompt renewed calls for reform

A watering down of alcohol advertising regulations in Australia has prompted renewed criticism of Australia’s current system for regulation alcohol advertising on television from public health groups, alcohol policy experts and leading medical colleges.

As reported by MJA Insight, last Thursday the Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) and the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists (RANZCP) released a new joint Alcohol Policy, in which they called for the phasing out of all alcohol sports sponsorships and the ceasing of advertisements during live games and broadcasts until after 8.30pm. Accompanying the release of the joint policy, the RACP undertook a review of nine sports across six categories and found all were influenced by alcohol sponsorships and advertisements, either at the stadium or during television coverage.

The findings of the RACP review echo the findings of numerous reports and reviews of Australia’s alcohol advertising regulations, which have highlighted major loopholes and failure of existing regulations to protect children and young people from regular exposure to alcohol advertising, particularly in relation to televised sports broadcasts. Despite these consistent findings, alcohol advertising regulations were further watered down last year by the Federal government’s media watchdog, the Australian Communication and Media Authority (ACMA)

According to MJA Insight, ACMA’s moves have prompted renewed calls for government intervention and strengthened regulations, including calls to abolish ACMA and replace the existing industry-led regulatory system with a truly independent and robust regulator.

For more information, go to the MJA Insight article at: https://www.mja.com.au/insight/2016/8/alcohol-advertising-rules-disgrace

Queensland passes laws to tackle alcohol-fuelled violence

18 February 2016

After an eleventh hour deal with cross benchers, the Queensland Parliament has passed Australia’s laws aimed at curbing alcohol-fuelled violence.

The Tackling Alcohol-Fuelled Violence Legislation Amendment Bill 2015, which was introduced into State Parliament in November, is part of an election commitment from the government and aims to reduce violence through reduced trading hours and lockout timeframes.

The new laws will see all licensed pubs and clubs across the state stop serving alcohol at 2am from as soon as 1 July 2016. Venues located in a safe night out precinct will call last drinks at 3am, with a 1am one-way door coming into effect from 1 February 2017.

The legislation also includes a ban on high alcohol content drinks, such as shots, being sold after midnight.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk says the laws would make Queensland safer and save lives. “The evidence is clear: reduced trading hours leads to reduced violence, and that’s what this Bill delivers. “Doing nothing is not an option. I’ve spoken to countless doctors, nurses, paramedics, police, parents and grandparents who have urged me to take action to curb alcohol-fuelled violence.”

 

See NAAA’s submission to Queensland Inquiry into Tackling Alcohol-Fuelled Violence Legislation Amendment Bill 2015

See ABC News Queensland Parliament passes controversial lockout laws, says state will be ‘safer’

See QLD Government media statement: Palaszczuk Government delivers on tackling alcohol-fuelled violence