Aussies signal thirst for government efforts

The nation’s most comprehensive annual alcohol poll has shed light on what we drink and think, highlighting that Australians want to get rid of our boozy hangover and are looking to governments to take action.

Three quarters (75%) of Australians think we have a problem with excess drinking or alcohol abuse, but for the first time this decade the annual poll has seen a significant shift in public perceptions – with an increasing number of Australians embracing recent government efforts to address alcohol harms and eager for the industry to be held more accountable.

Now in its sixth year, the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education’s (FARE) Annual alcohol poll 2015: Attitudes and behaviours provides valuable trend data and insights into community perspectives on alcohol.

Trend data shows a marked decline in the number of Australians who think our alcohol problems are unlikely to get better in the near future (71%, down from 76% in 2014).

The majority of Australians (73%) still think more needs to be done to reduce the harms from alcohol, but this has declined from 79% in 2014. Similarly, last year 64% of Australians thought governments weren’t doing enough to reduce alcohol harms. In the latest poll that figure has dropped to 55%.

FARE Chief Executive Michael Thorn says it is clear what is driving the shift in the nation’s attitudes to alcohol.

“The 2014 poll was undertaken at the height of community concern about alcohol-related violence in Sydney, when the devastating impact of alcohol featured prominently in the media. This year’s poll was reflective of a very different environment, following decisive action by the NSW Government to address alcohol harms. By introducing a range of measures including trading hour restrictions, NSW has led the way in restoring community confidence,” Mr Thorn said. Read more…

Full Report Media Release Drink Tank

Are you a responsible drinker?

The Annual alcohol poll 2015 unpacks our complex relationship with alcohol

FAREs 2015 Annual alcohol poll was launched in Melbourne on 30 April.

Watch as Herald Sun Editor Grant McArthur, consumer behaviour expert Dr Paul Harrison, Triple J Hack reporter Joanna Lauder and FARE’s own Caterina Giorgi unpack the 2015 findings and discuss Australia’s complex relationship with alcohol.

What is ‘responsible drinking’? What is the alcohol industry’s responsibility for the harms it creates? How does the alcohol industry target children through advertising, and what’s driving the shift in Australians attitudes to alcohol in 2015.


The findings