Alcohol Beverages Australia and the alcohol industry have zero tolerance for violence. Intoxication is no excuse for violent behaviour and should not be accepted as justification. There is no simple causal relationship between alcohol and violent behaviour. There is no evidence that, for most normal healthy individuals, the presence of alcohol in the brain results in, encourages or unleashes violence. Violence has no place in Australian society and government should be cracking down on violent offenders.
Underage alcohol consumption in Australia
Underage drinking has been in steady decline since around 2000 and has been in steady decline ever since. Rates of underage current drinkers have declined sharply and those who drink at risky levels (more than 4 standard drinks on a single occasion) has also declined, albeit at a slower rate.(,, ) The Alcohol Beverages Industry does not support illegal underage drinking, and will continue to invest in education programs that deal with this issue in ways that connect with underage drinking. References  http://www.nationaldrugstrategy.gov.au/internet/drugstrategy/Publishing.nsf/content/BCBF6B2C638E1202CA257ACD0020E35C/$File/National%20Report_FINAL_ASSAD_7.12.pdf (“ASSAD 2011”, http://www.aihw.gov.au/alcohol-and-other-drugs/ndshs/2013/alcohol/ (NDSHS study 2013) Searched 26th Aug 2015  Livingston M & Pennay A, https://theconversation.com/dont-believe-the-hype-teens-are-drinking-less-than-they-used-to-41884%20 (accessed 2 October 2015)  Pennay A (2015) Young people are drinking less: It is time to ﬁnd out why Drug and Alcohol Review 34, 115–118
Australian Indigenous Communities and Alcohol
The ABA believes that the best approach is local solutions for local communities, properly supported by high quality advice, assistance and enforcement. This recognises that each community faces its own unique circumstances and genuine support from that community is essential for solutions to be effective.
Women’s Alcohol Consumption and Pregnancy
In relation to pregnancy, unborn children should be protected, and that the use of the NHMRC guideline that ‘it is safest not to drink while pregnant’ as this is both practical advice and a useful pathway through conflicting scientific information and recommendations worldwide. Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is dealt with in a separate paper.
Alcohol and Health – Sub-policy on Cancer
Low to moderate intake of alcohol does not appear to be associated with an overall increased cancer risk. Alcohol appears to have a protective effect against some types of cancer including Hodgkins and non Hodgkins Lymphoma and Kidney cancer, it is neutral in many other cancers like brain and endometrial cancer; and increase digestive system and breast cancers Any increased risk of breast cancer from drinking in women is small in comparison to many of the other risks factors for breast cancer – age, family history, dense breasts, previous cancers, etc. The increase in digestive system cancers is small compared to many of the other risks for digestive (and particularly bowel) cancers including weight, a diet rich in red meat, inflammatory bowel disease or Crohnes Disease. Almost all risk of cancers is related to high levels of alcohol consumption. Any risk increase for lung cancer is minute compared to the risk from smoking. Substances that may cause cancer are all around us in our everyday lives. If you are concerned about your cancer risk from drinking alcohol beverages, please discuss this with your doctor.
Health - Cardiovascular
There is substantial evidence gained over more than 100 years that low to moderate levels of alcohol (generally 3 standard drinks per day or less) has no negative effects and for some can have a protective effect on cardiovascular diseases including heart attack, high blood pressure, ischaemic stroke, even when accounting for former heavy drinkers. There is further evidence that food may increase the cardioprotective effects of low to moderate alcohol intakes, both pharmacologically and through cultural effects Higher levels of alcohol intake and ’binge drinking’ has been associated with toxic effects from alcohol including “Holiday Heart” as well as chronic cardio-detrimental effects. Most risk ratios of hazardous drinking – up to 5 drinks per day – did not exceed a relative risk of 2. For the sake of perspective, the relative risk of a pedestrian illegally crossing a road against Do Not Cross signal (the “red man”) at traffic lights at a key intersection in Brisbane was 8.1.  King MJ, Soole D and Ghafourian A (2008) Relative Risk of Illegal Pedestrian Behaviours. Australasian Road Safety, Policing and Education Conference http://eprints.qut.edu.au/17630/1/RS080183.PDF searched 22nd Oct 2015
Alcohol and Health –Diabetes
The International Diabetes Federation estimates the worldwide prevalence of diabetes to 8.3% of all people, with Type 2 diabetes accounting for 90% of all cases. The global burden of disease attributable to diabetes in 2012 was 1.5 million deaths, and 89 million disability adjusted life years (DALYs). The relationship between alcohol intake and risk for both Type 2 diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome is characterized by a J-shaped or a U-shaped curve, similar to what is observed for cardiovascular disease. This means that moderate drinkers are at lower risk for both Type 2 diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome than abstainers and heavier drinkers regardless of gender and ethnic group. Moderate alcohol consumption appears to improve insulin sensitivity without affecting insulin secretion, producing better fasting triglycerides, and fasting glucose in obese patients with metabolic syndrome as well as broader populations. It is also associated with higher levels of High-Density Lipoprotein, which are associated with reductions in Metabolic syndrome and decreased cardiovascular risk. However, heavy drinking and heavy episodic drinking are associated with increased risk for Type 2 diabetes. Alcohol consumption has not been associated with onset or severity of Type 1 Diabetes, but a number of authors describe delayed hypoglycaemia in Type 1 patients, possibly associated with reduced nocturnal growth hormone secretion. (2, 3)