The industry funded institution Drinkaware has re-launched its ‘Why let good times go bad?’-campaign to address unhealthy drinking behaviors amongst the UK’s young adults. After cuts to the campaigning budget of the Department of Health, the campaign by Drinkaware is the only national alcohol awareness campaign.
It quickly becomes apparent that this is an initiative by alcohol producers, when we look at the main tips of the campaign:
• ‘It’s not a race, remember to pace’
• ‘Have something to eat to stay on your feet’
• ‘Try to make every third drink a soft one’
All these tips assume that binge drinking does take place and none of these tips actually discourages binge drinking. In fact, one could argue that the third tip actually encourages binge drinking by stating the number of drinks in a number of three.
The campaign entails the placing of ‘awareness messages’ on billboards, poster sites and in stations. Additionally, supporting campaign activity takes place in pubs, clubs, bars and supermarkets to ensure ‘that young adult drinkers are targeted at every stage of their night out’. EUCAM would like to point out, that this is an example of a highly ineffective measure to curb binge drinking. For one, research by Anderson, Chisholm and, Fuhr (2009) suggests that alcohol education does not affect drinking behavior and secondly, the tips from this campaign may actually encourage people in their binge drinking.
Source: alcoholpolicy.net (09/15/11)