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Binge Drinking & Alcohol Abuse

2011 Alcohol Awareness Week

The Salvation Army’s annual Alcohol Awareness campaign for 2011 looks at the links between alcohol and mental health. Through the campaign, we hope to encourage debate in our communities about alcohol habits. The Salvos are encouraging all Australians to think seriously about their use of alcohol and make it a topic of conversation among family and friends.

 

New Roy Morgan research released by The Salvation Army shows

  • 15.1 million people aged 14 plus (81%) now consider that drinking alcohol can worsen a person’s mental health.
  • 1.8 million people aged 14 plus (10%) say they sometimes drink alcohol as a way of dealing with feeling down or anxious.
  • 3.9 million people aged 14 plus (21%) say they sometimes end up drinking more alcohol than they had planned to.

 

The research also highlights that huge numbers of Australians aged 14 and over associate drinking large amounts of alcohol with a variety of mental health issues.

  • 14.1 million (76%) say as far as they are aware, drinking a large amount of alcohol can be associated with major depressive orders. Approximately 12.7 million (68%) say as far as they are aware, drinking a large amount of alcohol can be associated with anxiety disorders.
  • Approximately10.2 million (55%) say as far as they are aware, drinking a large amount of alcohol can be associated with bi-polar depression.
  • 11.2 million (60%) say as far as they are aware, drinking a large amount of alcohol can be associated with social phobias.

 Read Media Release

The Facts

The Salvation Army in Australia has produced a booklet entitled The Facts: Binge Drinking & Alcohol Abuse to help educate people on the dangers of alcohol.

Other resources

Previous Alcohol Awareness Week research

2010 Alcohol Awareness Week

The Salvation Army’s 2010 Alcohol Awareness campaign looked at why people drink alcohol, have they tried to reduce the amount they are drinking and if they’ve been unsuccessful in that effort, why?

Roy Morgan Research released by The Salvation Army on Monday, 13 September, concludes the consumption and misuse of alcohol remain major elements of the Australian way of life. It reveals, for example, that 12% of people sometimes drink simply because they want to get drunk (2.1 million people), and that within this overall number one in three 18-24 year olds reported that they sometimes or often consume alcohol because they want to get drunk.

The research estimates more than 7% of people often or sometimes drink alcohol “in order to feel normal” (approximately 1.3 million people).

The research also shows that in the past year 26.5% (approximately 4.8 million people) have deliberately cut down on the amount of alcohol they were drinking at the one time. Nearly 28% (approximately 5 million people) deliberately went without alcohol for a week.

In an encouraging move, The Salvation Army says the new research shows that in the past 12 months, 16% (approximately 2.9 million people) deliberately changed their drinking habits so that at least one day a week was alcohol free. Read media release and research report.

2009 Alcohol Awareness Week

The Salvation Army’s 2009 Alcohol Awareness campaign looked at the lack of awareness of the consequences of underage drinking, as set out in government guidelines amongst Australians.

Research released by The Salvation Army revealed 2.3 million Australians had their first alcoholic sip or drink when they were just 10 years of age or under. 7 million Australians had their first alcoholic sip or drink in their home and 8.8 million Australians had their first alcoholic sip or drink when they were with their family.

The research also revealed that 12.1 million Australians are not aware of the national guidelines on alcohol which indicate that for 15 to 17 year olds, the safest option is to delay the initiation of drinking for as long as possible.

1.7 million Australians believe it is safe to give someone 12 or under an occasional sip of alcohol and 5 million Australians believe it is safe for someone 15 years or under to be given occasional sips of alcohol.

The Salvos’ 2009 Alcohol Awareness campaign is designed to educate people about this research which shows the earlier a person starts drinking, the more likely it is they will have problems with alcohol in later life. The campaign also highlighted that whilst many people believe giving teenagers alcohol on a limited basis is a good thing, it can be risky. Read the full media release and research report.

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