- Alcohol-specific deaths in Scotland increase
- Students as Change Agents
- Health charities call for action to save lives from Scotlands biggest killers
- Australian ministers agree to visible pregnancy warning
- Three quarters of Scots back new controls to help protect children from alcohol advertising
- More accurate estimates for the burden of Alcohol on the Ambulance Service: around 1 in 6 callouts in Scotland are alcohol related
- How can alcohol labels be improved to help people make informed consumption choices
- Health experts call for better alcohol labelling
- Young people and their views on alcohol marketing
- Lowest alcohol sales in Scotland for 26 years
- Minimum unit pricing has lasting impact study shows
- Euros renews call for action to protect children from alcohol sports sponsorship
- Current alcohol labelling of little relevance to young adult drinkers
- Governments should step up efforts to tackle harmful alcohol consumption
- Scottish public and leading health experts back changes to alcohol labelling
- AFS calls for 65p minimum unit price for alcohol
- How will the main parties prevent harm from alcohol?
- Alcohol labelling reform is way past its sell by date
- Alcohol policy priorities for the next parliament
- Young drinkers believe prominent health warnings on alcohol could boost risk awareness
- Alcohol and the Workplace Effective Interventions
- Alcohol sales and consumption in Scotland during the pandemic
- How can we prevent alcohol deaths?
- Alcohol Deaths and Minimum Unit Pricing
- Young Scots show support for restrictions on alcohol marketing
- YoungScot Health Panel report on alcohol marketing and harm
- New release of alcohol related hospital admissions
- Better alcohol labelling – A way to boost awareness of the risk between alcohol and cancer?
- Alcohol Deaths Prevention Support
- Almost half of Scots in favour of minimum unit pricing
- NICE Guidelines on FASD Surveillance or Support?
- Leading health charities call for action in Scotland
- Health experts campaign for better understanding of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
- Health experts call for alcohol labelling overhaul
- Survey shows Scots lockdown drinking rise caused by stress
- Alcohol Focus Scotland welcomes new WHO report on alcohol pricing
- Statistical analysis of off-trade alcohol sales in the year following MUP
- Alcohol Focus Scotland Review of statements of licensing policy 2018 to 2023
- We need to continue long-term focus on alcohol
- Scots report changing drinking patterns during coronavirus lockdown
- Time to Blow the Whistle on Alcohol Sport Sponsorship
- New evidence demonstrates that alcohol ads lead to youth drinking
- Alcohol sales fall in first year of MUP
- First study published into under 18 drinkers post MUP
- Commission on Alcohol Harm calls for evidence
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- We need to do more to protect our children and young people
- Scottish primary children call for action on alcohol
- New Alcohol Deaths Prevention Support Now Available from AFS
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- A home for Rory
- Making a bad impression - blog post
- Alcohol sales and MUP
- Alcohol marketing and children debate in the Scottish Parliament
- Lowest alcohol sales in 25 years
- Research into fall in violence
- The Children's Parliament investigates an alcohol-free childhood
- Minimum unit pricing one year on
- More about sales data
- A family of resources it is all about prevention, education and resilience
- AFS publish Review of Licensing Board Annual Functions Reports 2017-2018
- Marketing unmasked dispelling the myths and taking a stand
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- Scotland publishes first UK guidelines for diagnosing fetal alcohol spectrum disorder (FASD)
- The Alcohol Framework 2018 Preventing Harm
- Scotlands new drug and alcohol strategy launched
- AFS welcome new alcohol strategy
- Recent reporting on alcohol sales data
- Diageo is failing to provide latest guidelines on their products
- Drinks companies keeping consumers in dark about risky drinking
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- Global first alcohol policy set to save hundreds of Scots' lives
- AFS welcomes minimum unit pricing for alcohol
- Truer picture of alcohol harm revealed
- Alcohol causes 3,700 deaths in Scotland every year
- Scotland's licensing system needs clearer direction
- Minimum pricing blog
- Minimum pricing gets green light
- Alcohol brands and young people
- Time for honest conversations about alcohol
- Q&A on alcohol marketing
- UK children anxious about parents' drinking
- Alcohol producers failing to inform public
- Concern over alcohol-related deaths
- We need to make it easier for people to drink less
- Worrying rise in alcohol-related deaths
- Minimum pricing will save lives
- Pocket money prices for alcohol continue
- Scotland's alcohol problem laid bare
- Cheap alcohol is costing Scotland dear
- One drink a day can increase breast cancer risk
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- What next for reducing alcohol harm in Scotland?
- Scotland must do more to turn tide of alcohol harm
- Concern as funding for alcohol services cut
- Scottish Government urged to curb alcohol marketing
- Consumers have the right to know health risks
- Alcohol-free childhood is healthiest option
- SWA granted leave to appeal minimum pricing
- Scottish Greens call for action on alcohol marketing
- SWA will appeal to UK Supreme Court
- SWA urged to respect minimum pricing decision
- Minimum pricing can be implemented in Scotland
- AFS welcomes revised alcohol consumption guidelines
- Emergency services face shocking levels of alcohol abuse
- New toolkit to help children affected by family alcohol problems
- Alcohol campaigners unite to call for stronger protection from alcohol advertising to children
- No completely 'safe' level of drinking
- New alcohol guidelines published
- Minimum pricing - European court ruling
- Alcohol: a global concern
The Children's Parliament investigates an alcohol-free childhood
We believe our children have the right enjoy a happy childhood, free from the emotional and physical impact of other people’s drinking and alcohol marketing. As adults we don’t necessarily appreciate the awareness children have of alcohol and its impact on their lives, assuming that because it isn’t aimed at them that they aren’t affected by it. We know from work with the Children’s Parliament that they notice and are affected by alcohol in their environment both in the home, and in their communities.
The Scottish Government has committed to put the voices of children and young people at the heart of developing preventative measures on alcohol.
The work the Children’s Parliament is doing will directly contribute to Alcohol Focus Scotland’s work to build support for an alcohol-free childhood, and the measures needed to achieve this. In particular, relevant findings will be included in AFS’s submission to the Scottish Government’s upcoming consultation on potential measures to protect children and young people from alcohol marketing in Scotland.
On the 28th May 2019 seven ‘investigators’ from the Children’s Parliament met with Minister for Public Health Joe FitzPatrick and Alison Douglas, chief executive of Alcohol Focus Scotland.
The investigators - a group of 9 to 11 year olds - have been working with 100 of their peers in three primary schools across Edinburgh.
During the session the children explained that they had carried out workshops with their classmates in Stenhouse, Sighthill and St John’s primary schools to learn more about where they see alcohol on a daily basis, how this makes them feel and what an alcohol-free childhood means to them.
Alcohol has routinely been raised as an issue by children in other projects run by the Children’s Parliament.
What have the Investigators found?
They talked about how the workshops had been run and the tasks the children had participated in to get them thinking about where alcohol appears in their lives. From the workshops it transpired that children are seeing alcohol or alcohol-related advertising from early in the morning, while getting breakfast, on their walk to school, throughout the day in shops, on posters and billboards and in parks, then on TV and online and in the home before they go to bed. The groups also talked about seeing people drinking while traveling on trains and before the football.
During the workshops held over three days, 100 children created artwork showing where they see alcohol in their lives. Each picture is brightly coloured with the alcohol left blank. The investigators talked the Minister through some of the images including shops where they see the brightly coloured price tags highlighting price discounts, sports ground hoardings with alcohol advertising, parties and social gatherings, and broken bottles as well as people drinking in parks.
When asked by Mr Fitzpatrick whether they see alcohol adverts on TV one child responded “We see it a lot, all the time”. The investigators reported more generally that the children across Edinburgh spoke about seeing adverts on TV, and finding this concerning as it might prompt adults to drink more, as well as people drinking in TV programmes.
What would an alcohol-free childhood look like to them?
In their view of what an alcohol-free childhood would be like the groups of children identified that;
- “Children would be better and healthier because when they grow up they wouldn’t think it is cool to drink.” MCP, ag 11
- “When children went to the football there would be less fights because people would think before doing anything bad.” MCP, age 10
- “It sometimes makes people feel left out at parties when everyone is drinking. Children can feel sad, ignored and not listened to.” MCP, age 9
- “If parks were alcohol free children might feel safe and happy” MCP, age 10
- “Life would be better [for children] because when they [adults] are drinking they could be spending time with their children.” MCP, age 10
- “It would make children feel less worried and more happy” MCP, age 10
What did the adults say?
Speaking on the subject Alison Douglas said, “As adults we tend to assume that as an age-restricted product children aren’t aware of alcohol and its advertising but we’ve got young children who are very aware of the different types of drinks, and of particular brands. What this work has really shown is just how often children are seeing alcohol – from opening the fridge in the morning when they get their breakfast throughout the day in shops, on adverts and in the home - and the negative effect it can have on their wellbeing.”
Joe FitzPatrick, Minister for Public Health said, “What I’ve been most surprised at today has been just how much children are coming into contact with alcohol in some way. When you see it written down and you hear them talking about it, it’s quite stark. Clearly alcohol has a huge impact on the lives of children, and it’s really important that we hear their voices as we move on to develop policies to protect children from the alcohol harm that affects the whole of society.”
Find out more about Alcohol Focus Scotland's work on an acohol-free childhood.