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Responsible Service of Alcohol

'Drunk People Don’t Think Straight'

This Responsible Service of Alcohol 'Drunk People Don't Think Straight' Campaign was launched in November 2009 and aimed to increase community understanding of the legal requirements of responsible service of alcohol in licensed premises (metro and regional) and increase patrons acceptance of bar staff implementing strategies such as refusing to serve patrons who are drunk.

The Campaign was run in partnership with Injury Control Council of WA (ICCWA) and the Department of Health.

Key messages

  • We have laws that bar staff need to abide by regarding the responsible service of alcohol.
  • By law bar staff are not allowed to serve someone if they are drunk, even if they are not causing trouble. Drunk people are not allowed to remain on licensed premises.
  • Serious consequences can occur to the community and the individual if bar staff serve someone if they are drunk.
  • The actions of drunk people don't only affect the drinker, they can impact on everyone in one way or another. Making sure licensed venues and their surrounds are safe places for people to socialise is important. Drunk people don't make good decisions.

Target groups

Primary: Patrons of licensed premises.

Secondary: Management and staff of licensed premises.

Campaign objectives

  • Increase bar patron's acceptance of staff in licensed premises refusing to serve alcohol to patrons who appear drunk.
  • Maintain and increase the responsible service of alcohol in licensed premises.
  • Increase awareness of the legal consequences for staff in licensed premises if they serve alcohol to persons who are drunk.
  • Increase awareness of the legal obligation of bar staff to refuse service to patrons who appear to be drunk, even if they are not disorderly.

Evaluation

Post-campaign evaluation found that:

  • The general community are positively predisposed to the legal requirement that bar staff serve alcohol responsibly to patrons, including themselves and their friends.
  • There were high levels of agreement that bar staff should refuse service to those who are drunk, and the overwhelming majority were in favour of bar staff refusing service to 'you or a friend'.
  • There were relatively high levels of awareness of specific laws under the Liquor Control Act, with the notable exception of the requirement to remove intoxicated people from the premises, and not allowing drunk people to enter a licensed premises.
  • The key message take out for general population related to drunk people not thinking straight, supporting bar staff and the need for responsible drinking.
  • The key message take out for bar staff related to supporting bar staff, and drunk people not thinking straight.

Resources

Campaign Audio Drunk people don't think straight radio ad 1
Drunk people don't think straight radio ad 2
Drunk people don't think straight radio ad 3
Related Information

The Responsible Service of Alcohol

The Responsible Service of Alcohol Campaign aims to increase community understanding of the legal requirements of responsible service in licensed premises.


Alcohol and Short-Term Harm

The most apparent immediate effects of alcohol impact the brain. The first effects include feelings of relaxation and loss of inhibitions.