Think before you supply under 18s drink
It’s illegal to buy alcohol for under 18 year olds, and any adult doing so has to think carefully about the potential
consequences, says Shari Tidswell, health promoter with the Hawke’s Bay District Health Board.
The Alcohol and Liquor Advisory Council (ALAC) has found that most young people who drink are getting alcohol from
adults they know, often their parents. Apart from the fact they could be liable for a $2,000 fine, the consequences can
be much more serious.
“Some parents have to live with the fact their child got drunk on alcohol they’d supplied, then caused a car accident
which killed someone, or got pregnant, or caught a sexually transmitted infection.
“More young people overdose on alcohol than any other drug, and it’s a sad fact that in most cases parents are the
suppliers. Young people don’t cope well with alcohol, and don’t have the emotional or cognitive skills to make good
decisions while drinking.
Hawke’s Bay retailers are getting behind a campaign entitled ‘Think’ to make parents or older friends of under-18 year
olds, really think about what they are doing if they are asked to buy alcohol for minors.
The Napier Safer community council are behind the campaign in Napier and Taradale which will see Woolworths and The Mill
outlets giving out information on the ‘Think before you buy under 18s drink’ campaign.
Havelock Alcohol Accord will run a campaign, with Havelock New World and Happy Tav handing out pamphlets and other
material on ‘Think before you buy for under 18’. All retailers involved are concerned about the effects of under-age
drinking. The campaign uses a number of resources to spread the message.
In addition, supermarkets are running a campaign which encourages checking the identification of all those aged 25 and
under buying alcohol.
“The bottom line is, it’s against the law, and adults shouldn’t be buying alcohol for under 18 year olds…and we’ll be
spreading that message through printed shopping bags, bumper stickers, badges, pamphlets, and word of mouth,” Shari