An initiative led by DrinkWise and Queensland Hotels Association (QHA) aims to remind Queenslanders about moderation, respect and responsibility in on-premise venues.

Queenslanders are more likely to engage in risky drinking, with 34 per cent of drinkers falling into the category, compared to the national average of 28 per cent. Risky drinkers are classified as people who consume 10 or more standard drinks a week, or more than four standard drinks during a day.

“The latest Australian Government statistics confirm that Australians are continuing to make healthier and safer decisions with respect to their alcohol consumption. Over the past 15 years we have seen drinking habits change substantially, with less drinking at risky levels and many reporting that they have cut back on their consumption.

“Of course, while the majority of Australians are choosing to drink within the recommended government guidelines, there are still some who are drinking at risky levels, engaging in anti-social behaviour or turning to alcohol as a coping strategy, which is why we’re increasing our efforts in Queensland,” said DrinkWise CEO Simon Strahan.

As of Monday 8 May, posters, coasters, and digital assets are being displayed in in 24 pubs, bars and bottle shops throughout central Cairns. Young adults in the Cairns area will be targeted through social media messaging from moderation, mental health and support service social media. Over the next few weeks, the initiative will be expanded to include 93 licensed venues across the broader Cairns, Mount Isa and Townsville areas and Clubs Queensland venues across the state.

“The DrinkWise messaging is really important to educate the wider community about drinking in moderation and being respectful to those they live with and the wider community at all times. The resources remind our community about expected behaviour in our licensed venues and encourage them to reach out for help if they or someone they know needs support managing their alcohol consumption,” Senior Sergeant of Queensland Police Gary Hunter commented.

The initiative is a collaboration between DrinkWise, QHA, Queensland Police, Member for Cairns and Assistant Minister for Tourism Industry Development Michael Healy, Mayor of Cairns Bob Manning, Clubs Queensland and the North Queensland Cowboys.

“This collaboration with police, industry, community and government will help to promote a great experience for patrons as well as reinforcing expectations around individual responsibility when entering our pubs, bars and bottle shops in regional Queensland. This is an important initiative that will also help set expectations for the 2.8 million visitors from across the globe who holiday here each year with us,” said Healy.

Additionally, the initiative recommends use of services such as Lives Lived Well, ReachOut, 13YARN, 1800RESPECT, DVConnect and Men’s Referral Service for people having difficulty managing their consumption or behaviour.

“QHA is proud to support this initiative to remind patrons that having a great experience at licensed venues means respecting those around you and consuming in moderation if drinking alcohol. It is important that QHA are helping promote messages that encourage conversations about mental health, with pubs integral to our regional Queensland communities.

“We want to ensure that as our customers come together at licensed venues, to socialise, have a meal, catch up with friends and family, they have a great time and they also use these opportunities to talk about local issues and support each other,” concluded QHA CEO Bernie Hogan.

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