Media

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team is readily available to help journalists with their media enquiries, with a range of spokespeople available to share their expertise on different alcohol and other drug-related issues.

Contact

For more information please contact:

Media and Stakeholder Manager: Carmel Green
Media Officer: Hannah Andrews
03 9611 6104 or 0430 948 380
media@adf.org.au

Recent media releases

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation welcomes today’s announcement that the Medically Supervised Injecting Centre trial in North Richmond will be extended for three years and a second site established in the City of Melbourne.

The independent review of the Medically Supervised Injecting Centre in North Richmond reported that since the facility opened in 2018, there has been:

  • 4,350 clients registering with the service
  • Over 119,000 visits and at least 21 lives saved
  • More than 3,200 overdoses safely managed
  • Over 13,000 health and social support interventions for issues like family violence and mental health
  • Decreases in reports of public injecting in the North Richmond area
  • Reduced ambulance call outs

Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor, said the trial extension would help save more lives and provide pathways to treatment and other health services.

“The  North Richmond facility is saving lives and providing clients access to important health and support services such as mental health services, treatment and housing services,” Dr Lalor said.

“The number of clients registering and accessing the facility demonstrates the need for an additional site. It is the busiest supervised injecting centre in Australia,” Dr Lalor said.

Dr Lalor said she hoped the announcement of $9 million to upgrade the North Richmond area would help reduce stigma attached to the centre.

For free and confidential drug information or support, people can visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

For further information, please find the below Alcohol and Drug Foundation resources:

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation has today unveiled new data that shows increased video catch ups with friends as a catalyst for Australian parents drinking more alcohol during the COVID-19 lockdown.

One in five (19%) parents who have upped their alcohol consumption during isolation cited extra video socialising as a factor in their increased alcohol intake. Of those, parents aged 18-34 were far more likely (31%) to say extra video socialising prompted them to drink more.

The data has led to today’s launch of a reflective new video campaign showing children imitating the behaviour of some parents during online iso-video chats. Alcohol dominates the kids’ conversation, with one innocently claiming he’s been “sucking the guts out of a few cold ones”, another boasting “oh yeah, got myself a slab”.

The video is part of the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s You haven’t been drinking alone’ community health initiative which has been developed to encourage parents of school-aged children to consider how their drinking may have changed during lockdown, the impact it may be having on their health and how they may be inadvertently influencing their children’s attitudes and behaviours towards alcohol.

“The past couple of months have been really stressful for parents and video catch ups have become a key way for people to connect with friends and families,” said Alcohol and Drug Foundation CEO, Dr Erin Lalor AM.

“While video catch ups have played an important role in addressing social isolation, a by-product has been bringing the pub into many Australian homes, with kids listening or watching.

As social distancing measures continue to ease, the Alcohol and Drug Foundation is encouraging parents to be mindful of how they have been drinking during isolation and the role it can play in shaping their children’s attitudes and behaviours towards alcohol.

“There is a compelling body of evidence highlighting how parental behaviours and attitudes towards alcohol play one of the strongest roles in influencing children’s future behaviour towards alcohol. This is not something to be taken lightly.”

“We don’t want children learning to think alcohol is a healthy lifestyle choice or to view alcohol as a coping mechanism for feelings of stress, anxiety or boredom.”

“Parents can role model lower-risk behaviours around alcohol by drinking no more than 10 standard drinks per week and no more than four standard drinks on any day. We also encourage parents to show their kids that they don’t always need alcohol to relax, have fun, as a reward, or in every social situation,” Dr Lalor added.

The launch of today’s new video campaign comes off the back of a YouGov poll conducted by the Alcohol and Drug Foundation in mid-May, which revealed more than one in four (29%) parents of school-aged students have increased their alcohol intake since the outbreak of coronavirus, with 20% consuming alcohol in front of their children daily or every other day.

For further information on the ‘You haven’t been drinking alone’ campaign, visit https://adf.org.au.

ENDS

Media Release PDF

Notes to media: The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm. For further information about alcohol use and ways to reduce related harms during COVID-19, please visit https://adf.org.au/covid-19/.

For free and confidential drug information or support, the Alcohol and Drug Foundation encourages people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au.

Parents drinking more in isolation but they haven’t been drinking alone

New data released today by the Alcohol and Drug Foundation shows Australian parents have been consuming more alcohol, more frequently, during the coronavirus lockdown, with almost one in six (14%) saying they’ve been drinking every day.

Since the start of lockdown, more than one in four (29%) parents have increased their alcohol intake, with millennial parents the most likely to be drinking more (35%), followed by Gen X parents (28%), then baby boomers (16%).

Parents of 9-12 year olds were found to be drinking the most, with one in 10 saying they were drinking “a lot more” following the introduction of coronavirus restrictions.

Impressionable 9-12 years olds were the most exposed to drinking, with almost a quarter of parents of this age group (23%) saying they have been consuming alcohol in front of their children daily or every other day during lockdown.

Pressures resulting from lockdown have been a considerable factor for increasing alcohol consumption. Almost two-fifths (38%) of Australian parents reported heightened levels of stress and anxiety as the reason for their increased alcohol intake, with one in four parents specifically pinpointing the challenges of home- schooling.

The data, based on a national poll of over 1,000 parents, has been released to support a new community health initiative: ‘You haven’t been drinking alone’, launched today by the Alcohol and Drug Foundation.

It aims to encourage parents to consider how their drinking may have changed during lockdown, the implications it may be having on their own health and, importantly, how it may be influencing their children’s attitudes and behaviours.

Alcohol and Drug Foundation CEO, Dr Erin Lalor AM, said: “Coronavirus has had a significant impact on our whole community but especially for parents, with many having to balance changes to their work life, increasing uncertainty and the challenges of home schooling.

“It’s really concerning that more than one quarter of Australian parents have increased their alcohol consumption since the reality of COVID-19 hit.

“Parents may have been drinking in isolation, but they haven’t been drinking alone. Since the start of lockdown, some children have seen their parents’ occasional alcoholic drink turn into a daily ritual. Others have played in the background of their parents Zoom calls which can act as virtual pub tables.

“While many parents have been using alcohol as a coping mechanism, it is important to understand that exposure to regular or excessive drinking can influence children’s attitudes and future behaviours around alcohol, alongside increasing the parent’s risk of accidents, injuries, dependence and diseases like cancer.

“Our survey of parents across Australia suggests one of the primary reasons for increased alcohol consumption during coronavirus is heightened feelings of anxiety or stress. If you are feeling stressed or anxious, it’s best to avoid drinking alcohol because it can make these feelings worse. It’s also essential that children don’t learn to view alcohol as a coping mechanism or to think drinking alcohol is a healthy lifestyle choice.

“There is a strong body of evidence that demonstrates parental behaviours and attitudes towards alcohol and other drugs are the most important influencers in guiding children’s future behaviour and decisions.

“To reduce the risk of harm from alcohol-related injury or disease such as cancer, the draft national guidelines recommend people consume no more than 10 standard drinks per week and no more than four standard drinks on any day.

“The good news is, just as adults can easily form and pass on unhealthy behaviours, they can just as easily do the opposite.

“As the restrictions of coronavirus begin to ease, parents can quickly re-establish themselves as positive role models,” said Dr Lalor.

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Media Release PDF

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm. For further information about alcohol use and ways to reduce related harms during COVID-19, please click here.

For free and confidential drug information or support, ADF encourages people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is reiterating its calls for all Australian jurisdictions to follow the lead of the Northern Territory Government and introduce a minimum unit price on alcohol.

An independent report released today shows that the implementation of a minimum unit price on alcohol in the Territory has been associated with significant reductions in alcohol-related assaults, ambulance attendances, emergency department presentations, road crashes and child protection notifications.

“This responsible legislation has complemented other harm reduction initiatives in the Northern Territory and is helping to build a healthier and safer community,” said Alcohol and Drug Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM.

“The legislation, alongside other measures, is doing what it intended, which is to reduce harmful alcohol consumption,” Dr Lalor added.

Since a minimum unit price on alcohol was introduced in the Northern Territory in October 2018, a standard alcoholic drink cannot be legally sold for under $1.30.

“The Northern Territory Government has shown leadership in recognising the strong link between price, alcohol consumption and related harms such as accidents, injuries, violence and ill-health,” Dr Lalor said.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is urging all states and territories to introduce a minimum unit price on alcohol to address key priorities identified in the new National Alcohol Strategy.

"Implementing a range of evidence-based measures, including a minimum unit price on alcohol, would make a big difference in reducing harmful alcohol consumption and improving the health and safety of Australians,” Dr Lalor said.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm.

For free and confidential drug information or support, we encourage people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

Media Release PDF

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

As strict social distancing rules continue in many states and territories, the Alcohol and Drug Foundation is urging Australians to keep connected with loved ones, to help boost mood, alleviate stress or boredom and reduce the risk of problematic alcohol consumption.

Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM said, whilst she acknowledges the need for prolonged social distancing measures, some people may experience heightened feelings of isolation, anxiousness or boredom, which are all risk factors for increased alcohol use.

“It’s really tough at the moment and we know that in times of crisis, alcohol consumption increases. This is concerning, as it can lead to short and long-term negative health outcomes such as dependence, accidents, injuries and illnesses such as cancer,” Dr Lalor explained.

“Since the outbreak of Covid-19, people have been using alcohol as a coping mechanism. If you are feeling sad, lonely, stressed or anxious, it’s best to avoid drinking alcohol, as it can make these feelings worse.

“The Alcohol and Drug Foundation really encourages people to maintain or strengthen their connections with loved ones in times of hardship, as it means they can vent, share experiences, receive or give support, take their mind off the situation, or have a few laughs,” Dr Lalor added.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s website lists simple and innovative ways people can connect with friends and family, even if it can’t be in person. They include:

*Make your catch-ups virtual: schedule a virtual dinner date, have a distance movie night, enjoy after work mocktails

*Try a new activity together: take up a new hobby or skill with a loved one and attempt an online tutorial together, sign up to an online fitness class with a friend, do your ‘meaning to get to it’ thing and share progress pictures with mates

*Get competitive (or co-operative): Challenge a friend or family member to a classic game like Chess, Dominoes or Scrabble (online versions are available), or try some of the latest videogames together

*Without internet access? Set regular times to talk with loved ones, try playing games over the phone (such as 20 questions of 6 degrees of separation) or try asking new questions, as it can be surprising the things we may never usually get the chance to learn about our friends and family

“Staying connected with others and using healthy coping mechanisms is critical to maintaining good health and wellbeing, which is particularly important at this time,” Dr Lalor remarked.

“Whist some interactions might seem a little strange at first, they should help people relax or take their mind off Covid-19, at least for a little while.

“We also encourage people who are feeling stressed, anxious or down, to try tactics such as listening to music, exercising or reading. If you still aren’t feeling yourself, connect with a health professional. Don’t wait for the pandemic to pass to reach out for support. There is lots of help available,” Dr Lalor added.

For free and confidential drug information or support visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

For further information about alcohol use and ways to prevent or reduce related harms during Covid-19 visit https://adf.org.au/covid-19/

Media Release PDF

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For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation has commended the Australian Government’s $6 million funding announcement for drug and alcohol-related services during Covid-19, saying it will play a key role in preventing and reducing harms such as accidents, violence and dependence.

Chief Executive Officer Dr Erin Lalor AM welcomed the funding, which includes $2 million to support the Alcohol and Drug Foundation roll out initiatives to improve health and wellbeing during isolation.

“It’s really tough at the moment and we know that in times of crisis some people turn to alcohol and other drugs as a coping mechanism,” Dr Lalor said.

“What we don’t want to see on top of current challenges is an increase in alcohol and drug use leading to an increase in dependence and other harms, such as violence, accidents or injuries.

“The new funding will support important efforts to increase awareness of the risks associated with alcohol consumption during isolation, help people understand the signs they may be developing problems with alcohol and steps to reduce intake,” Dr Lalor added.

The awareness campaign will provide information, help and support relating to alcohol and other drugs and improve people’s knowledge of where to get help. It will also assist with the launch of an online initiative for communities to connect and develop health promotion activities to prevent alcohol and drug harms during isolation.

“Feeling isolated is a risk factor for increased alcohol and other drug use. It’s really important at this time that people strengthen their connections with others,” Dr Lalor explained.

“We want to help and encourage community members as much as we can to stay connected with family, friends and others around them, even if it can’t be face to face at the moment,” Dr Lalor added.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm.  For further information about alcohol use and ways to reduce related harms during COVID-19, please visit https://adf.org.au/covid-19/

For free and confidential drug information or support, we encourage people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84.  The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

Media Release PDF

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

NEW DATA SHOWS IMPACT OF COVID-19 ON HOUSEHOLD ALCOHOL CONSUMPTION

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is urging Australians to be mindful of their alcohol consumption, as new national data reveals the impacts COVID-19 is having on people’s alcohol intake.

Results from a YouGov Galaxy poll, commissioned by the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE), shows 20 per cent of households reported buying more alcohol than they normally would.

In these households:

-70% reported drinking more alcohol than usual amid the COVID-19 pandemic

-More than a third (34 per cent) said they are now consuming alcohol every day

-32% reported they are concerned about how much alcohol they are drinking, or someone else in their household is consuming

-Over a quarter (28%) said they were drinking alcohol to cope with anxiety and stress

-20 per cent report having started drinking alcohol earlier in the day

Alcohol and Drug Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM said the poll results were concerning.

“The Alcohol and Drug Foundation acknowledges that this is an extremely challenging time. What we don’t want to see on top of current challenges though, is an increase in alcohol-related harms,” Dr Lalor said.

“We are urging Australians to prioritize their health and wellbeing at this time, including taking steps to reduce alcohol-related harms. There are no health benefits of alcohol. Drinking alcohol can make feelings of stress and anxiety worse, weakens the immune system and heightens the risk of accidents, injuries and illness,” Dr Lalor explained.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s advice for people consuming alcohol includes:

-Stick to the Draft National Guidelines, which recommend no more than 10 standard drinks per week and no more than 4 standard drinks on any day to reduce the risk of harm from alcohol-related disease or injury.

-Avoid using alcohol as a coping mechanism if you are feeling stressed or anxious. Try alternative activities such as listening to music, exercising, reading or connecting with loved ones. If you don’t feel better, reach out to a health professional for some advice.

-Model responsible drinking around children, including limiting consumption and avoiding intoxication.

-Don’t mix alcohol with other drugs such as pharmaceuticals or illicit substances

-Call 000 in an emergency

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm. For further information about alcohol use and ways to reduce related harms during COVID-19, please visit https://adf.org.au/covid-19/

For free and confidential drug information or support, we encourage people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is deeply concerned by the latest Commonwealth Bank figures, showing further increases in alcohol sales amid the Coronavirus crisis.

CommSec data released on Tuesday 31st March, shows alcohol sales rose again over the past week, with a 34% increase compared to the same period a year ago. Whilst spending on alcohol services, such as pubs fell by 49%, spending on alcoholic products at outlets such as bottle shops, skyrocketed by 86% compared to the same week as last year.

Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM, urged Australians to prioritize their health and wellbeing during this difficult time, including taking steps to reduce the risk of alcohol-related harms such as dependence, accidents and injuries.

“The Alcohol and Drug Foundation acknowledges the stress and anxieties people are feeling at the moment," Dr lalor explained.

"We are worried that as alcohol sales continue to rise, so will excessive drinking and related harms such as violence, accidents, injuries and dependence."

“It’s particularly important at the moment that people maintain their physical and mental health. People need to understand that there are no health benefits of alcohol, in fact, consuming alcohol can weaken your immune system, disrupt your sleep and make feelings of stress and anxiety worse,” Dr Lalor added.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s advice for people consuming alcohol includes:

  • Stick to the national guidelines. The National Health and Medical Research Centre recommends drinking no more than four standard drinks on a single occasion to avoid injury or illness, and no more than two standard drinks on any day to reduce the lifetime risk of alcohol-related injury and disease such as cancer.
  • Avoid using alcohol as a mechanism to relieve stress and/or anxiety, as alcohol can heighten these feelings. Try alternative tactics such as listening to music, exercising, reading and connecting with loved ones. If you are still feeling stressed or anxious, seek advice from a health professional.
  • Model responsible drinking around children, including limiting consumption and avoiding intoxication.
  • Don’t mix alcohol with other drugs, including medications.
  • If you are consuming alcohol, the safest option is to avoid getting behind the wheel. Alcohol can significantly impact on a person’s driving because it can cause drowsiness, impaired vision, and reduced concentration and reaction times. It can also lead to overconfidence and risk taking behaviour.

Dr Lalor said that she was also worried that The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) has reported a 'concerning’ number of alcohol-related hospitalisations during the Coronavirus pandemic. RACS said preventable drink driving cases have contributed to a recent spike in trauma-presentations.

“A reduction in alcohol-related accidents and injuries is a key step in taking pressure off hospital resources needed for coronavirus presentations,” Dr Lalor said.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm.

For free and confidential drug information or support, we encourage people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84.  The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

Media Release PDF

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is urging Australians to avoid drink driving, amid reports of a 'concerning’ number of alcohol-related hospitalisations during the Coronavirus pandemic.

The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (RACS) says preventable drink driving cases have contributed to a recent spike in trauma-presentations.

Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM, backed calls by The Royal Australasian College of Surgeons to look out for each other and avoid risky behaviours such as driving under the influence of alcohol.

“The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is urging people to take steps to maintain their physical and mental health during this uncertain time, including reducing the risk of alcohol-related harms,” Dr Lalor explained.

“If you are consuming alcohol, the safest option is to avoid getting behind the wheel. Alcohol can significantly impact on a person’s driving because it can cause drowsiness, impaired vision, and reduced concentration and reaction times. It can also lead to overconfidence and risk taking.”

“A reduction in alcohol related accidents will also take pressure off hospital resources needed for coronavirus presentations,” Dr Lalor added.

Other tips to reduce the risk of alcohol-related harms include:

-Stick to the national guidelines. The National Health and Medical Research Centre recommends drinking no more than four standard drinks on a single occasion to avoid injury or illness, and no more than two standard drinks on any day to reduce the lifetime risk of alcohol-related injury and disease such as cancer.

-Don’t mix alcohol with other drugs, including medications.

-Avoid using alcohol as a mechanism to relieve stress and/or anxiety, as alcohol can heighten these feelings. Try alternative tactics such as listening to music, exercising, reading and connecting with loved ones. If you are still feeling stressed or anxious, seek advice from a health professional.

-Model responsible drinking around children, including limiting consumption, avoiding intoxication, not drinking and driving, and showing you can deal with stress in healthier ways.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm.

For free and confidential drug information or support, we encourage people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84. The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

Media Release PDF

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is concerned by the surge in alcohol sales amid the coronavirus pandemic, fearing it may lead to increased domestic violence, accidents and injuries.

Commonwealth Bank data shows alcohol sales have risen by 20.4% compared to this time last year, confirming reports of people stockpiling and panic buying alcoholic products.

Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM, said she is worried there will be increases in the number of people consuming alcohol in their homes as a coping mechanism in this uncertain time.

“The Alcohol and Drug Foundation acknowledges the strain being placed on individuals and families, as the impact of coronavirus unfolds,” Dr Lalor remarked.

“It’s important that people take steps to maintain their health and wellbeing and reduce the risk of alcohol-related harms,” Dr Lalor added.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s advice includes:

*Avoid using alcohol as a mechanism to relieve stress and/or anxiety, as alcohol can heighten these feelings. Try alternative tactics such as listening to music, exercising, reading and connecting with loved ones. If you are still feeling stressed or anxious, seek advice from a health professional.

*Model responsible drinking around children, including limiting consumption, avoiding intoxication, not drinking and driving, and showing you can deal with stress in healthier ways.

*Stick to the national guidelines. The National Health and Medical Research Centre recommends drinking no more than four standard drinks on a single occasion to avoid injury or illness, and no more than two standard drinks on any day to reduce the lifetime risk of alcohol-related injury and disease such as cancer.

*Don’t mix alcohol with other drugs, including medications.

“We are urging people to be mindful not to encourage the normalisation of alcohol consumption, especially around children,” Dr Lalor said.

“There are no health benefits of alcohol. Consumption can lead to accidents, injuries and other serious health impacts such as dependence, liver damage and cancer,” Dr Lalor said.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is strongly committed to supporting all Australians with quality information to prevent and reduce alcohol-related harm.

For free and confidential drug information or support, we encourage people to visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84.  The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

Media Release PDF

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.

The Alcohol and Drug Foundation is concerned lobbying by the alcohol industry has hindered efforts to introduce clearer pregnancy warning labels, aimed at protecting the health of unborn babies.

Late last week, food and health ministers requested a review of the labels, proposed by Food Standards Australia and New Zealand. The labels include a pictogram and/or the message ‘HEALTH WARNING: alcohol can cause lifelong harm to your baby’ in red and black text.

The disappointing review request comes after the alcohol industry launched a campaign against the proposed new labels, which are clearer than the existing labels.

“The alcohol industry is out to make a profit, so strong health warnings on their products are a real threat to them,” Alcohol and Drug Foundation Chief Executive Officer, Dr Erin Lalor AM, said.

“Currently pregnancy warning labels on alcoholic products can easily be missed as  they might be too small or the colours don’t stand out enough.”

“We have a responsibility to protect babies from alcohol-related harms. All Australians have the right to know if a product is going to cause harm to their unborn child,” Dr Lalor remarked.

Dr Lalor said it is crucial Australians are aware that abstinence from alcohol is the safest option during pregnancy and that there are a number of risks associated with consuming alcohol while pregnant or trying to fall pregnant.

“Unfortunately, too many Australians don’t know that drinking alcohol during pregnancy or while trying to conceive, risks adverse outcomes such as miscarriages, still births, low birth weight and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD),” Dr Lalor explained.

“People who are affected by fetal alcohol exposure are at risk of life-long brain damage which may result in learning difficulties, mental illness, chronic offending behaviour and subsequent incarceration, and often require lifelong support.”

Dr Lalor added that the alcohol industry should be called out on any attempts to use Coronavirus as a cover to delay much needed public health protections.

For free and confidential drug information or support, people can visit www.adf.org.au or call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s DrugInfo line on 1300 85 85 84.  The non-judgmental service provides the facts about alcohol and other drugs, advice on how to support loved ones, and connects people with relevant health and support services in their state and territory.

Media Release PDF

ENDS

For media enquiries please call the Alcohol and Drug Foundation’s media team on 0430 948 380 or email media@adf.org.au

The Power of Words: There’s power in the language we use to talk about alcohol and other drugs, and people who use alcohol and other drugs. Stigmatising language can negatively impact on a person’s health, wellbeing and relationships. Using person-centric language, instead of focusing on an individual’s substance use, has the power to reduce stigma and improve health and social outcomes. For a guide to using non-stigmatising language, please see the Power of Words or the Mindframe Guidelines.