A Hard Road: Driving Local Action against Alcohol Related Problems in a Rural Town

Julaine Allan, Lynda Bowtells, Jehan Zeb


Abstract

Context is important in developing strategies to address alcohol related violence. Knowledge of local conditions is critical to action in rural areas. The aim of this study was to gather information about context specific alcohol related problems experienced by frontline workers in a regional centre to inform the local alcohol action plan.

Frontline workers were invited to participate in one of five focus group discussions that investigated problems experienced as a result of other people’s alcohol use. Alcohol related problems were more frequently associated with time periods than any single group in the community. Social media was used to incite arguments between groups in different venues during the lock-out periods. The focus groups identified that the location of licensed premises and a taxi rank; and previous relationships between protagonists were the key contextual factors causing alcohol related problems.

A second taxi rank was identified as a useful local management strategy. Supply reduction was suggested as a key factor in long term solutions to alcohol related problems in rural towns. The local liquor accord did not want to reduce supply of alcohol by closing late night venues earlier.

Local action to reduce alcohol related problems will be limited to pragmatic solutions because supply reduction is unacceptable to those in the business of selling alcohol.

Full Text

PDF

References

AIHW (2011) 2010 National Drug Strategy Household Survey report. Drug statistics series no. 25. Cat. no. PHE 145. Canberra: AIHW

Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (2008) Rural, regional and remote health: indicators of health status and determinants of health. Rural Health Series no. 9. Cat. no. PHE 97. Canberra: AIHW. http://www.aihw.gov.au/publications/phe/rrrhihsdh/rrrh-ihsdh.pdf

Collins, D. & Lapsley, H. (2008). The Costs of Tobacco, Alcohol and Illicit Drug Abuse to Australian Society in 2004/05. Commonwealth of Australia http://www.health.gov.au/internet/drugstrategy/publishing.nsf/Content/34F55AF632F67B70CA2573F60005D42B/$File/mono64.pdf , accessed 18 April 2012

Czech S, Shakeshaft A, Breen C & Sanson-Fisher R. (2010) Whole-of-community approaches to reducing alcohol-related harm: what do communities think? Journal of Public Health, 18, 543-51

Foley S, Valenzuela A (2005) Critical ethnography: the politics of collaboration. (Eds N Denzin, Y Lincoln) The Sage handbook of qualitative research. (3), pp. 217 234. Sage: Thousand Oaks, CA

Fox, N. (1993) Postmodernism, sociology and health. Open University Press, Buckingham.

Gee, J.P. (2005) An introduction to discourse analysis: theory and method. 2nd ed Routledge, London

Midford, R (2001). The nature and extent of drug-related harm in the community and the implications for the workplace. In Allsop, S, Phillips, M & Calogera, C (eds) Drugs and Work: Responding to alcohol and other drug problems in Australian workplaces, IP Communications, Melbourne, pp. 42-56

Miller, P. Coomber, K. Staiger, P, Zinkiewicz, L & Toumbourou, J (2010) Review of rural and regional alcohol research in Australia, Australian Journal of Rural Health, 18 (3), pp 110-117

National Preventative Health Taskforce(2008), (2009) Australia: the healthiest country by 2020 National Preventative Health Strategy Overview. Commonwealth of Australia, http://www.preventativehealth.org.au/internet/preventativehealth/publishing.nsf/Co ntent/AEC223A781D64FF0CA2575FD00075DD0/$File

NSW BOCSAR (2011) Alcohol related crime report. http://www.bocsar.nsw.gov.au/lawlink/bocsar/ll_bocsar.nsf/vwFiles/alcohol_related_ crime.xls/$file/alcohol_related_crime.xls accessed 18 April 2012

Strong, S, Trickett P, Titulaer, I. Bhatia, K (1988) Health in Rural and Remote Australia. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, AIHW Cat.No. PHE6, AIHW, Canberra

Williams, P. (2000) Alcohol-related social disorder and rural youth: Part 2 Perpetrators. Trends and issues in crime and criminal justice. Report No. 149. Australian Institute of Criminology, Canberra

Article Metrics

Metrics Loading ...

Metrics powered by PLOS ALM