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Action on alcohol and gendered violence

State and territory governments around Australia have the power to keep women and children safe, by better regulating the way alcohol is marketed, sold and delivered into homes.

But right now the intense lobbying from alcohol companies, who wield significant influence in the corridors of power is stopping this from happening.

Alcohol is involved in between 23% and 65% of all police-reported family violence incidents. 

When perpetrators are drinking, it also increases the severity of violence, leading to higher rates of harm and injury. 

Australian evidence shows greater access to alcohol increases the risk of violence – and the largely unregulated explosion in online sales and delivery has only added fuel to the fire.

So, let’s call for our governments to do what’s right, and put the health and wellbeing of women and children before industry profits.

of women who experienced sexual assault by a man in the past 10 years believed that alcohol or another substance contributed to their most recent incident
0 %
of women who experienced sexual assault by a man in the past 10 years believed that alcohol or another substance contributed to their most recent incident
0 %

Policies for online sales and delivery of alcohol around Australia

The rapid rise of alcohol sold online and delivered into the home has massively increased availability.

Research shows alcohol delivery is used to extend drinking sessions. When alcohol can be delivered within 20 minutes – at any time of the day or night – without checks and balances, it puts families at greater risk of violence.

Some jurisdictions have taken the first steps towards reducing harm.

It’s time for the rest of the country to follow suit.

There are no specific regulations for the online sale and delivery of alcohol in the ACT.

The NSW government implemented some reforms in 2020. These included mandatory ID checks when buying alcohol online and when it is delivered, mandatory responsible service of alcohol training specific to delivery and making it an offence to sell online or deliver alcohol to people under 18 or to people who are intoxicated.

However, alcohol deliveries can occur late into the night up to midnight most nights of the week.

In 2019, the NT government implemented several reforms, following a review of alcohol laws in 2017.

Current measures in place include limits on late night delivery and required ID checks when delivering alcohol. The government has also made it an offence to deliver alcohol to anyone under 18, people who are intoxicated, or to leave a delivery unattended.

However, there are several areas where change is still needed in requirements to check ID when ordering alcohol online.

There are no specific regulations for the online sale and delivery of alcohol in Queensland.

The state government introduced some reforms in 2018 including making it an offence to deliver alcohol to people aged under 18, or people who are intoxicated and requiring ID checks for delivery.

However, there are several areas where change is still needed in requirements to check ID when ordering alcohol online.

There are almost no specific regulations of the online sale and delivery of alcohol in Tasmania. However, it is an offence to deliver alcohol to anyone under 18.

In 2021, the state government introduced several reforms including mandatory ID checks when delivering alcohol and the introduction of a licence specific to online sale and delivery, which delivery providers must obtain. It is also an offence to deliver or sell alcohol online to anyone under 18, to people who are intoxicated, or to leave deliveries unattended.

The WA government introduced some protections in 2022, including mandatory ID checks when delivering alcohol and making it an offence to deliver alcohol to anyone who is under 18 to people who are intoxicated, or to leave deliveries unattended.

However, there are several areas where change is still needed in requirements to check ID when ordering alcohol online.

  1. Personal Safety Survey, Australia, ABS, 2023
  2. Alcohol/Drug-Involved Family Violence in Australia (ADIVA) sourced from Family, domestic and sexual violence, AIHW, 2024 

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“A fire cannot be started by kerosene alone, it needs a match. But when fuel is added, it burns more intensely. The same is true of the link between domestic violence and alcohol.”
Kym Valentine
Television/theatre actor and Survivor Advocate

“A fire cannot be started by kerosene alone, it needs a match. But when fuel is added, it burns more intensely. The same is true of the link between domestic violence and alcohol.”

Kym Valentine

Television/theatre actor and Survivor Advocate

Share your story

Bold policy change must be informed by people across the country with lived experience of the role alcohol plays in fuelling men’s violence against women.

Sharing your story can help ensure decision-makers listen to and consider lived experience when enacting policies that affect our communities.

Campaign timeline

April 30, 2024

Dozens of community, health and Aboriginal organisations join FARE in signing an open letter to National Cabinet, calling for immediate action on better alcohol regulation to reduce rates of men's violence against women and children.

May 1, 2024

National Cabinet meets and Prime Minister Anthony Albanese announces a suite of measures that do not include any mention of meaningful reform on the commercial determinants of family violence, including alcohol and gambling.

May 1, 2024

FARE responds to National Cabinet's decision to overlook alcohol's role in family violence.

May 2, 2024

Media coverage the day after National Cabinet highlights the action that's required on alcohol to curb rates of family violence.

May 7, 2024

FARE CEO Caterina Giorgi joined 70 experts from across the country at the Crisis Talks Into Missing and Murdered Women, convened by Domestic Violence Commissioner Micaela Cronin.

May 9, 2024

Following the roundtable, the Commissioner drew a link between alcohol and family violence - and implored Premiers and Chief Ministers to consider better regulating.

May 12, 2024

Actor and survivor advocate Kym Valentine called on decision-makers to take action to help make women and children safer within their own homes.

May 28, 2024

The Federal Government appointed an expert panel to conduct a rapid review into how to prevent men’s violence against women and children.

May 29, 2024

Community organisations and researchers gathered in Perth to discuss the policy responses needed to address alcohol’s role in violence. The discussion focused on a review study, led by Dr Ingrid Wilson, which found men’s high-risk alcohol use contributes to violence yet interventions to target these harms are scarce.

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