FEDERAL GOVERNMENT AND AUSTRALIAN MUSIC INDUSTRY TO HELP SPREAD RESPONSIBLE DRINKING MESSAGES
The Federal Government has joined forces with the Australian music industry to reach young people with responsible drinking messages, Parliamentary Secretary to the Federal Minister for Health and Ageing, Trish Worth, announced today.
The partnership was launched this morning by Ms Worth at The Metro in Sydney, attended by representatives of Mushroom Marketing, Sanity Music Stores and three of Australia's best new rock bands.
Ms Worth said the National Alcohol Campaign's 'Alcohol, where are your choices taking you?' promotion would be strengthened by the partnership between the Government and the music industry.
"For too long the modern music industry and its performers have been associated with excessive alcohol use. It is valuable for young people who enjoy modern music to see their favourite rock bands or music store promoting drinking choices that avoid young people being harmed," Ms Worth said.
"These harms associated with excessive drinking include violence, unprotected and unplanned sex, physical harm and humiliation."
The Australian Institute of Health and Welfare's 2001 survey estimates that 1.2 million teenagers consumed alcohol in 2001.
Young people aged 14 to 29 were identified as most likely to consume alcohol in a way that puts them at risk for long term alcohol-related harm.
The Federal Government has contributed $350,000 in sponsorship for the music industry to help it deliver campaign messages to young people.
"The sponsorship is part of the ongoing National Alcohol Campaign launched by the Federal Government in 2000 with the aim of reducing alcohol-related harm to young Australians," Ms Worth said.
"Together we are getting the message out to young people through products like:
· the multi-media e-genie disc on the front of the December issue of Sain Magazine, the Sanity Music free instore publication;
· articles in Sain Magazine;
· campaign messages on the Sanity Top 100 music charts;
· a competition promoted on-line and in Sanity stores that encourages young people to talk about the kind of choices they make about drinking alcohol; and
· campaign promotions in Sanity stores around the country."
The three bands involved in the partnership and who attended today's launch are Another Race (represented by Jake Nicolasien), CrashPalace (represented by Marcus Maloney) and The Butterfly Effect (represented by Kurt Goedhart).
"Members from each of the bands have had personal experiences of the negative consequences of alcohol consumption and it is their testimonials that form the heart of this project," Ms Worth said.
"The bands' personal stories and endorsement of the campaign increase the credibility of the National Alcohol Campaign messages with the target audience (young people aged 15-17 yrs).
"Choosing whether or not to drink, and how much to drink, isn't an easy decision for many teenagers (or adults) and sometimes a dream night out can quickly turn into a nightmare.
"It is encouraging to see industries such as the Australian music industry taking up the mantle of social responsibility and caring for their young fans.
"This is happening at all levels of the industry - from the bands, their management and record companies, right through to venue owners and the retail sector.
"This level of support gives an indication of the high level of concern that the Government and the music industry has for the health and wellbeing of young Australians.
"Today's partnership shows that we're getting the right messages across to young people."