Parents, Young People and Alcohol 'I need you to say no'

Two out of three parents say 'no' and, it's helping to prevent alcohol-related harm.

The Alcohol.Think Again ‘I need you to say no’ (Young People) campaign is a collaborative initiative between the Mental Health Commission (MHC) and Alcohol Programs Team, Public Health Advocacy Institute of WA. The campaign is part funded by Healthway.

The Young People campaign is informed by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) guidelines that ‘for young people under 18-years-of-age, not drinking alcohol is the safest option’ and sees an emphasis placed on supply control.

The Young People aims to reinforce that most parents don’t provide alcohol to their children; and given teenagers vulnerabilities to the effects of alcohol and associations with adverse adult outcomes, it’s best for teenagers to delay alcohol use until at least 18 years-of-age.

This campaign launched in November 2018 and will run until late 2020.

Target group

Primary: Parents of young people 12 to 17 years-of-age in Western Australia.

Secondary: Young people 12 to 17 years-of-age in Western Australia.

Key messages

No one should give alcohol to under 18s.

Campaign objectives

  • Reducing inflated perceptions of the prevalence of underage drinking.
  • Increasing the age at which adults believe it is acceptable for adolescents to initiate alcohol use.
  • Increase feeling personally at being at risk of being diagnosed with alcohol-caused conditions.
  • Increasing the belief of adolescents vulnerabilities to the effects of alcohol.
  • Creating support amongst the community for policy measures to reduce alcohol-related harm in adolescents.

Evaluation

An independent social research agency was engaged to conduct a mid-campaign evaluation following its first year in market. The evaluation was conducted in October 2019 and comprised a total of 410 respondents across WA.

A summary of the mid-campaign evaluation results are below:

Parents

  • Overall, three in four (73%) parents recognised the campaign when prompted.
  • Almost nine in 10 (89%) parents correctly or partially correctly recalled the key message take out.
  • Over four in five (82%) parents correctly identified the NHMRC drinking guideline that under 18’s should not drink any alcohol at all.
  • Half (52%) of Western Australian parents who were aware of the campaign reported taking action as a result of the campaign.
    Of those: 
    • 7% (equating to approx. 11,445 parents) claimed to have stopped supplying alcohol to under 18s.
    • 48% (equating to approx. 78,490 parents) claimed to have spoken to their child about alcohol.
  • More than two in three (67%) parents report never having given alcohol to their child under 18 years-of-age.

Young people

  • Almost one in three (63%) recognised the campaign when prompted.
  • Over nine in 10 (91%) young people correctly or partially correctly recalled the key message take-out.
  • Almost three in five (57%) young people who were aware of the campaign reported taking action as a result of the campaign. Of those, 35% claimed they ‘decided not to drink alcohol’ and 29% ‘spoke to their parents about alcohol’.
  • A high proportion of young people correctly identified the NHMRC drinking guidelines that under 18’s should not drink alcohol (70%), and also believe medical experts recommend that for under 18s, not drinking alcohol is the safest option (79%).

For more findings from the mid-year evaluation, click here.

Resources

Campaign Audio
30 second Radio

Campaign Video
TV - 30 second

TV - 15 second

Social - 6 second, Door

Social - 6 second, Dinner

Social - 6 second, School

Social - 6 second, Skate

1

NHMRC (2009). Preventative Health Taskforce (2009). Preventing alcohol-related harm in Australia: technical report 3. Retrieved from http://www.health.gov.au/internet/preventativehealth/publishing.nsf/content/09C94C0F1B9799F5CA2574DD0081E770/$File/alcohol-jul09.pdf

2

Mattick, R. P., Wadolowski, M., Aiken, A., Clare, P. J., Hutchinson, D., Najman, J., . . . Kypri., K. (2017). Parental supply of alcohol and alcohol consumption in adolescence: prospective cohort study. Psychological Medicine, 47, 267-278. doi:10.1017/S0033291716002373

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