Teenage Binge Drinking In Australia

1234 Words 5 Pages
‘Was the government successful in curbing binge drinking by introducing the Alcopop Tax?’

Teenage binge drinking has become a major problem in Australia with almost 90 per cent of Australian teenagers over the age of 14 years having tried alcohol at least once. These statistics call for Government intervention in order to prevent the overuse and development of binge drinking among teenagers as it contributes to the three major causes of teen death: injury, homicide and suicide. This intervention delivered a federal tax known as the alcopop tax, which taxes commonly abused pre-mixed drinks by 70%. This tax has both positive and negative impacts on the main stakeholders: teenagers, the government, health departments and alcohol industry, making
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Today, alcohol is responsible for most drug-related deaths in the teenage population, with data suggesting 17.6% of teenage drinkers drink at levels regarded as having long-term health effects according to the 2007 National Drug Strategy Household Survey. (Booze Blitz) Irresponsible use of alcohol has significant impacts on teenage health leading to binge drinking, drink driving, unsafe sex, impaired brain development and injury or death. (Alcohol Teenagers) Although the alcopop tax aimed to decrease teenage drinking and health effects, it has been shown there was a 1.5% reduction in alcohol consumption between 2008-2009, with alcopop sales falling by almost 30%. (Is the alcopop tax working?) However despite an overall decrease in consumption there has been no decrease in alcohol related hospital cases, showing it has not been effective in reducing drinking habits. A study done by Access Economics of hospital admissions and the emergency department shows there was no reduction in cases of alcohol related incidents across Australia. (Effect of the increase) This shows the tax has not worked in reducing alcohol related causes and has not benefited the health departments with an equal amount of cases as before the alcohol was introduced, but has reduced overall …show more content…
Some taxes similar to Australia’s Alcopop Tax are the UK’s alcopop tax, France’s alcopop tax, Germany’s alcopop tax, Mexico’s soda tax and Denmark’s fat tax. These taxes have proven to change some habits however in most cases have just changed preferences and people have found a way around the taxes. This proves there is need for a tax alternative to change consumer habits in the long term, however Professor Kisley of University of Queensland says “Taxation may be an answer but it has to be broadly targeted,” proving a tax would work if it impacted all alcohol rather than just alcopops. (Study

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