FARE 2013 Election Platform: 10 ways to reduce alcohol harms

Researcher

Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education

Summary

Ahead of the 2013 Federal Election, the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE)’s 2013 Election Platform sets out what we believe should be done to reduce the rising alcohol toll in Australia. The platform outlines ten public policy measures which represent the most cost-effective and evidence-based actions that will reduce alcohol’s growing toll.

The case for all political parties to prioritise alcohol policy reform during the 2013 Federal Election campaign has never been more compelling. There are four key reasons why alcohol control policy must be prioritised in the upcoming election.

  • Alcohol causes significant harms in Australia and many of these harms are increasing.
  • This is a problem with a solution – we know what works to prevent and reduce alcohol harms.
  • Australians are concerned about alcohol harms and want governments to take action to address these harms.
  • Unless we act now, alcohol harms will continue to increase.

Outcomes

The evidence is clear on effective policies and programs to prevent alcohol harms. FARE has identified ten actions for political parties to adopt in the lead up to the 2013 Federal Election to prevent alcohol harms.

1. Demonstrate leadership on alcohol policy by developing a comprehensive national alcohol strategy with clear targets.

2. Tax wine as alcohol and stop taxpayer funded rebates that result in alcohol being sold for as cheap as 25 cents a standard drink.

3. Raise awareness of the significant harms that result from alcohol consumption during pregnancy, by introducing mandatory alcohol pregnancy warning labels.

4. Prevent and address the invisible disability caused by prenatal alcohol exposure by implementing The Australian Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Action Plan.

5. Enable Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to develop communityled actions to address alcohol harms.

6. Safeguard Australian children and adolescents from the prolific promotion of alcoholic beverages by prohibiting alcohol industry advertising on television before 8.30pm and introducing independent regulation of alcohol marketing.

7. Protect Australian children and adolescents from incessant alcohol marketing at sporting and cultural events by banning alcohol industry sponsorship.

8. Support health professionals to talk to Australians about their alcohol consumption.

9. Ban political donations from the alcohol industry and develop a code of conduct on government engagement with industry.

10. Support evidence-based development of alcohol policy by addressing the gaps in alcohol data collection and research.

FARE continues to fund and undertake research that contributes to the knowledge-base about alcohol harms and strategies to reduce them.

This research is used to inform our approach to evidence-based alcohol policy development, ensuring that the solutions we are advocating for are informed by research. FARE’s research is also often quoted by governments, other not-for-profit organisations and researchers in public discussions about alcohol, demonstrating that FARE is seen as a leading source of information.

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