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Should sports clubs sell soft drinks?

26 February 2014

Earlier today we sent the letter below to Queensland newspapers, addressing recent media on calls to ban sugary drinks at sports clubs:

Letter to the editor 

A call this week to ban sugary drinks at sports clubs shines a welcome spotlight on how we as a community can make sure our clubs promote good health.

Alcohol, tobacco and obesity together are the three main contributors to disability and death in Australia.

Children deserve a healthy environment to play sport, and that includes making sure healthy food and drink options are the norm - water should be the go-to-drink at games, not fizzy drinks.

The Australian Drug Foundation’s Good Sports Healthy Eating program is already working with more than 126 sporting clubs and associations in Queensland to help them provide healthy food and drinks, as well as manage alcohol responsibly and provide smoke-free grounds.

By providing unhealthy food and drink in our sports clubs we are sending mixed messages.

It’s time we think more carefully about the kinds of food and drink we sell in our clubs and make sure that our kids are getting healthier when they’re out playing sport.

Daniel Egan, QLD Good Sports Manager, Australian Drug Foundation

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Good Sports Healthy Eating is an Australian Drug Foundation community program to promote healthy food and drinks within sports clubs. The program has combined and built on the success of the original Good Sports program and Food for Sport: Health Food and Drink Guidelines for Sporting Clubs. It is supported and funded by the Australian and Queensland Governments through the National Partnership Agreement on Preventative Health.

 
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Swapping the suit for a high-vis vest
6 February 2014

 

Australian Drug Foundation CEO John Rogerson will today try his hand at donning a yellow high-vis vest and selling Melbourne's most famous street magazine – The Big Issue.

Mr Rogerson said he was pleased to be helping to sell magazine's 450th Issue as part of International Vendor Week.

"The Big Issue provides opportunities for people from a range of backgrounds, including those who have suffered because of drug and alcohol dependency, with the opportunity to earn an income and build their confidence and capacity to help themselves," Mr Rogerson said.

"I'm selling the magazine today to support people in the community who find it hard to get help and to get a job."

"I think it's a really positive way to support these people who deal with a lot of complicated issues in their lives."

John Rogerson will join one of The Big Issue's regular vendors

• Corner of Bourke and King St, Melbourne

• 11.30am-12pm today (Wednesday 6 Feb)

Media are welcome to attend.

The Big Issue is sold on the streets by homeless, marginalised and disadvantaged people. Vendors buy copies of the magazine for $3 and sell them for $6, keeping the difference.

Media enquiries:

ADF: Jennifer Willis 0430 948 380 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

The Big Issue: Eszter Vasenszky 0415 319 421 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

 
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Opinion: Choose Health not Hysteria
5 February 2014

 

Syringe vending machines are a common-sense way to reduce the spread of blood borne viruses among our community.

Australia began providing clean syringes to injecting drug users in 1986. By providing clean syringes, countless lives and millions of taxpayer health care dollars have been saved. As a result, Australia's injecting drug users have one of the lowest incidence of HIV in the world. Cases of viruses contracted by the community via needle stick injury are extremely rare.

These vending machines mean people (with 24/7 addictions) can access the service after hours and on weekends. Syringe vending machines also provide collection points for used syringes and will reduce the number of discards. Similar machines have operated for years in Sydney without causing problems.

Addiction to drugs blights our society, but we can limit the worst effects with sensible preventative measures, or make things worse. All the evidence suggests vending machines will reduce the risk of disease and ill health to all Victorians, so we should choose health over hysteria.

Geoff Munro 
National Policy Manager 
Australian Drug Foundation

 

 

Media enquiries: Jennifer Willis 0430 948 380 or This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Geoff Munro is available for comment.

 
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Good Sports reaches 100 clubs in NT

30 January 2014

More than one hundred sports clubs across the Northern Territory have pledged to reduce the link between alcohol and sport by committing to the Good Sports program. - See more at: http://goodsports.com.au/around-the-ground/articles/100-nt-clubs-commit-culture-change-2/#read

More than one hundred sports clubs across the Northern Territory have pledged to reduce the link between alcohol and sport by committing to the Good Sports program.

Read more here.

 
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400 Sydney sports clubs commit to breaking the link between alcohol and sport

28 January 2014

Community sports clubs across Sydney have committed to breaking the link between alcohol and sport with 400 clubs now accredited as part of the Australian Drug Foundation’s Good Sports program. 

Good Sports works with clubs to help them provide safe and healthy environments for families to play sport through the responsible management of alcohol. More than 6,000 clubs are involved with the program around Australia. 

In Sydney, the Greystanes Football Club is the 400th club to be accredited, with the program now reaching more than 177,000 Sydneysiders. 

Nikki Woolley, Good Sports NSW State Manager, said with alcohol a leading cause of preventable illness and death in Australia, breaking the link between alcohol and sport has never been more important. 

“Australians love their sport, and with 25 per cent of us regularly involved in community sport it’s important for clubs to set a good example,” she said. “Alcohol has been a means of both celebrating wins and commiserating losses, and for too long now sport and binge drinking have been closely linked. 

Good Sports is about putting the spotlight back on sport, family and fun – and away from risky drinking. It’s great to see so many clubs in Sydney committing to this change.” 

Anita Tinker from Greystanes Football Club said that Good Sports was helping to promote positive messages and examples around alcohol. 

“With over 600 members of which two-thirds are juniors, the most significant community focal point for Greystanes FC over its 43 years of operation has been to provide a safe and healthy environment where all family members are given the opportunity to enjoy football,” she said. “Although alcohol consumption at Greystanes FC is very minimal, the club feels strongly about providing an environment that promotes responsible social alcohol consumption and encourages other clubs to do the same through the program." 

  • People involved in sport drink at 4 to 9 times higher rates. 
  • Alcohol harm costs Australian more than $15 billion every year. 
  • According to independent research, the Good Sports program is associated with a reduction in short-term risky drinking of about 10%. 
  • Good Sports is Australia’s largest preventive health program for the community sporting sector, with over 1800 community sporting clubs registered in NSW and more than 6000 involved nationally. 
  • Transport for NSW is the major supporter of Good Sports in NSW, helping Good Sports reduce the incidence of drink-driving and encourage safe driving among young drivers. 
  • Drink driving is a factor in around one in every five crashes in NSW where someone loses their life. 
  • In Sydney, there were 3,510 crashes involving alcohol over the five year period 2008‐ 2012. This resulted in 61 fatalities and 2,374 injuries. 
  • For more information about Good Sports visit www.goodsports.com.au or find us on Facebook.com/GoodSportsClubs
 
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