#1172 for broadcast on 2CH Sydney, 3 January 2016
In our efforts to protect kids and adults from the serious harmful impact of drug use, the widespread availability and abuse of alcohol must not be sidelined.
In a recent opinion piece in The Sydney Morning Herald, Dr Benjamin Veness, who works in the emergency department of a metropolitan hospital, commented on the NSW government’s “Stoner Sloth” ad campaign warning young people against using marijuana.
He said the campaign was a missed opportunity to prevent the most dangerous drug-related harms. He said:
especially among younger patients, drugs are a common cause of presentations. On a recent Saturday, I spent an entire 10-hour shift dealing with drug-related injuries. Not a single one of them related to cannabis – rather, all of them were associated with alcohol…
[The ad campaign was] a bizarre target for a government that spends millions mopping up alcohol-related harm, particularly given its associations with motor vehicle accidents, domestic violence, and assaults including date rape.”
If you drink, drink responsibly.
I’m Rod Benson for the NSW Council of Churches.