It is well recognised that child and adolescent exposure to alcohol advertising is associated with earlier initiation of drinking and greater consumption among existing drinkers. Alcohol researcher and advocate Julia Stafford believes poor alcohol marketing regulations in Australia continue to be an issue.
“Government and industry co-regulate alcohol marketing in Australia, a system which has been heavily criticised for being weak and ineffective in protecting children,” said Ms Stafford.
Julia Stafford is the Executive Officer of the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth in Australia, dedicated to raising awareness and reducing alcohol-related harm among young people.
In her Global Alcohol Policy Conference (GAPC) presentation, Making Sense of Weakened Alcohol Marketing Regulation in Australia: A Case Study, Ms Stafford reflected on the recent review of Australia’s Commercial Television Industry Code of Practice.
“Despite active and sustained participation by health and community groups in the review and a strong evidence base to strengthen controls, alcohol advertising provisions were significantly weakened in the revised code,” said Ms Stafford.
Her analysis builds an understanding of the conditions leading to the weakened policy and identifies the challenges and opportunities in understanding the role of vested interests in the policy process.
In this short video, filmed at GAPC 2017 in Melbourne, Ms Stafford shares some insights about her work and how the Australian Government and health organisations can act to strengthen alcohol marketing regulations.