What does 'every1 doesn't do it!' mean? - It means that on the Central Coast.......

Most underage young people are not alcohol drinkers (read more)

Most parents and other adults don't supply underage young people with alcohol (read more)

Most packaged liquor outlets don't sell alcohol to young customers without checking ID (read more)

Most adults don't want more packaged liquor outlets in their area (read more)

Most underage young people are not alcohol drinkers 

Despite what some media articles might have you believe, the majority of young people between the ages of 12 and 17 either don't drink alcohol or only consume small amounts. It's estimated that less than 1 in 7 (13.9%) Central Coast secondary school students would have had a drink containing any alcohol in the last week and, for those that did, for the majority it would only be a small amount. Less than 1 in 17 (5.7%) would have had 4 or more standard drinks on a single occasion.1

It's common for people to assume that the behaviours that stick out in their minds, because they're dangerous, outrageous, and scary or have tragic consequences, are representative of the majority. Sure, there are too many young people who drink, and the harms associated with this are enormous, but don't think it's the norm, or that it's getting more common. In fact the latest National Drug Strategy Household Survey2 and the Australian Secondary Students Alcohol and Drug Survey3 both indicate that underage drinking has fallen sharply. Between 2002 and 2011, drinking in the past week fell by more than half for 12 to 15 year olds (from 29% to 11%) and nearly as dramatically for 16 to 17 year olds (48% to 33%).

It's dangerous territory to believe that the risky behaviour is the norm. Because young people experience pressure to fit in, it is important not to perpetuate the false idea that most young people are problem drinkers.

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Most parents and other adults don't supply underage young people with alcohol 

The latest national survey results indicate that, of the minority of underage people who do drink, about 11.8% are given alcohol from a parent. The most common supply source, at 17.8% of all supply, is to be given the alcohol by a friend.4

While being given alcohol by a parent is the second most common supply source, direct retail purchase may be the supply source for the riskiest underage drinking. Young people who purchase their own alcohol are not only more likely to drink unsupervised, on average they drink twice as much as other young drinkers.3 They are also a potential supply source for other underage drinkers.

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Most packaged liquor outlets don't sell alcohol to young customers without checking ID 

That's true, but unfortunately rather a lot do. In the most recent Central Coast survey approximately 45% of bottle shops sold to teenage customers without requesting ID. We conservatively estimate that there may be 250 retail sales of alcohol to underage people on the Central Coast weekly.5 To find out more click here

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Most adults on the Central Coast don't want more packaged liquor outlets in their area 

92% of responents in a community health survey of 1003 Central Coast residents aged 18 years and over said the Central Coast already had enough or too many packaged liquor outlets – only 2% of respondents indicated that more outlets were needed on the Central Coast, 69% indicated that they felt there are already enough and 23% indicated that there are already too many. When the same sample of respondents was given a short message regarding the link between increased outlet density and levels of crime, violence and underage drinking, the number of respondents who indicated that there are already too many increased to 35.4% and the number of respondents indicating that more outlets were needed halved to just 1%.6

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1. NSW School Students Health Behaviours Survey (SAPHaRI) 2014. Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence, NSW Ministry of Health.
2. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare 2014. National Drug Strategy Household Survey detailed report 2013. Drug statistics series no. 28. Cat. no. PHE 183. Canberra: AIHW
3. Australian secondary school students' use of tobacco, alcohol, and over-the counter and illicit substances in 2011. Drug Strategy Branch Australian Government Department of Health and Ageing.
4. 'Parental supply of alcohol to Australian minors: an analysis of six nationally representative surveys spanning 15 years', Kelly et al. BMC Public Health (2016) 16:325 DOI 10.1186/s12889-016-3004-2
5. The estimate of underage sales is derived from the Centre for Epidemiology and Evidence. New South Wales School Students Health Behaviours Survey: 2011 Report. Sydney: NSW Ministry of Health, 2013 and Australian Bureau of Statistics 2011 Census of Population and Housing Basic Community Profile (Catalogue number 2001.0) Wyong (10202) and Gosford (10201) B04 age by sex, Count of persons Based on Place of Usual Residence
6. Central Coast Local Health District. Central Coast Community Health Survey: Analysis of Telephone Survey 2014. Central Coast Local Health District and Central Coast NSW Medicare Local.

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