Focus on parents in underage drinking campaign
In the lead up to leavers, parents are the ones being targeted in an effort to reduce underage drinking.
A new Western Australian television campaign will be aired tonight aimed at parents while some liquor stores in leavers hotspots have a plan in place to stop young people getting others to buy drinks for them.
The advertisements explain to parents the effects of alcohol on the developing brain of their children and promote the message that no alcohol is the safest choice for those under 18 years old.
The campaign comes at the same time that research shows young people are drinking at increasingly risky levels.
Mental Health Minister Helen Morton launched the state-wide campaign on Tuesday along with the findings of the 2011 Australian School Students Alcohol and Drugs Survey.
"This latest campaign is about giving parents important facts and the latest research about their children and alcohol," Mrs Morton said.
"A child's brain develops until their early 20s and they need to be discouraged from starting to drink and drinking harmfully."
According to the government's figures, fewer young people are choosing to drink; however, those who are drinking are doing so at increasingly riskier levels.
Those drinking at risky levels had increased from 20.9 per cent in 1993 to 36.2 per cent in 2011.
BWS and Dan Murphy's liquor stores in leavers hot spots across the country, including some WA stores, will have security guards at their doors as part of extra measures being taken during the leavers period.
According to a statement from the company anyone accompanying an adult purchasing alcohol who looks under 25 will be required to present ID at the checkout to prove they are over 18 or neither party will be served.
BWS area manager for the region that covers much of the South West, Mark Wilson said extra measures would be put in place at stores in Halls Head, Busselton and Dunsborough for the leavers period.
He said stores often had teenagers coming in and pointing out the products they wanted their parents to buy them.
Mr Wilson said staff members refused to sell alcohol to these people.
He said staff would also be on the look out for groups of young people approaching people outside stores asking them to buy alcohol for them.
BWS and Dan Murphy's national liquor licensing manager Shane Tremble said the action plan had been created to curb underage drinking.
"The secondary supply of alcohol to minors is a significant issue for our stores, the authorities and the community," he said.
"We know that very few underage drinkers attempt to buy alcohol themselves, preferring to ask others to buy it for them, so it is important that we tackle this issue head-on.
This year's official leavers celebrations in Western Australia are planned for November 26 to 29.
Poll: What are your thoughts on school students drinking alcohol on leavers?
- It's part of the school leaver experience to drink - the crackdown is an overreaction
- I think it's ok for parents to exercise their discretion in buying alcohol
- School leavers should be able to do what they want - they're young adults
- I'm not sure
- The crackdown on leavers drinking is long overdue
Total votes: 99.
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