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ACT families tackle binge drinking with The Other Talk

Parents wanting to learn how to discuss the risks of using alcohol and other drugs with their children have the opportunity to prepare with one of Australia’s most experienced drug prevention and education experts.

Geoff Munro from the Australian Drug Foundation (ADF) will host an open forum in Woden on Monday 7 April to help parents learn the best ways to talk with children about drugs and alcohol, and how they can help reduce the chance of their children developing substance problems in the future.

“Research from Deakin University shows rates of teen binge drinking are reduced by 25 per cent when parents set rules not to supply or allow adolescent alcohol use,”* Mr Munro said.

“We want to make it easier for parents to initiate the conversation about alcohol and drugs, and to make their behaviour expectations clear to their children.  Feeling informed goes a long way in helping parents get that confidence,” Mr Munro said.

Mr Munro said drinking and drugs are often still taboo or difficult subjects within many families.

“This session will show parents how they can use resources available at www.theothertalk.org.au to break down some of that awkwardness and difficulty in talking about alcohol and other drugs,” he said.

“Many people think it’s better to give your kid some alcohol at home while they’re underage so they learn to handle it - but actually the research says this is definitely not the right thing to do. The longer you can delay your teenager drinking, the better. Young people’s brains are still developing and drinking early can cause damage.

“We’re encouraging parents to talk with their children about alcohol and other drugs because they can deter adolescent drinking and play a vital role in drug prevention.”

The Other Talk Forum for Parents

Date: Monday 7 April 

Time: 7pm to 8.30pm

Venue: Phillip Room, The Woden Tradies, Launceston St, Woden

RSVP by 2 April: Debbie Simms at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 0425 754 741

This Forum is brought to you by the Australian Drug Foundation’s Good Sports Program, working with community sporting clubs to reduce risky drinking across the ACT. www.goodsports.com.au.

Geoff Munro is the National Policy Manager at the Australian Drug Foundation. He has worked in the alcohol and other drug field for over 25 years specialising in drug training, drug prevention and community development. He is a co-editor of Drug Education in Schools: Searching for the silver bullet and is an author of a chapter in the latest edition of Drug Use in Australian Society.

Geoff Munro is available for interview.

Media Enquiries: Jennifer Willis 0430 948 380, media @adf.org.au

* Deakin University, 15 October 2013, Media Release: Firm rules by parents can prevent adolescent binge drinking, Melbourne.

 
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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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