05 Dec, 2013 Last updated: 27 Jan, 2015

Minister for Mental Health Mary Wooldridge and VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter will today unveil a new campaign designed to spark a frank and open discussion about alcohol consumption levels.

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• Coalition Government provides $2.6 million for alcohol culture change campaign
• Campaign is a key initiative of the Coalition’s Reducing the alcohol and drug toll: Victoria’s plan 2013-2017
• Campaign aims to reshape Victoria’s alcohol culture into one that embraces moderation, rather than applauding excess and harm

Minister for Mental Health Mary Wooldridge and VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter will today unveil a new campaign designed to spark a frank and open discussion about alcohol consumption levels.

Running across the summer months, the Name That Point campaign invites Victorians to win $5,000 by naming the point at which clear thinking turns into more drinking, headaches, empty wallets – and worse. Weekly winners will share in cash prizes and an overall winner will be announced at the end of summer.

While aimed at young people aged between 16 and 29 years, all Victorians are invited to Name That Point and discuss alcohol and its place in our wider community online, at www.namethatpoint.com and www.facebook.com/namethatpoint  

Name That Point will be a fun way for young Victorians to share their thoughts on what role they think alcohol plays in our culture. The online tools will pose questions and talking points, display videos and allow visitors to share their contributions.

Ms Wooldridge said that the Victorian Coalition Government has provided VicHealth with $2.6 million to develop and run an alcohol cultural change project, which is a key initiative of the government’s Reducing the alcohol and drug toll: Victoria’s plan 2013-2017. The Name That Point campaign is the first phase of the project and the learnings from this phase will help inform phase two later in 2014.

“Alcohol is widely promoted and available in our community, and many young people grow up believing that drinking excessively is a rite of passage. Having a drink or two is fine, but at times drunkenness is condoned – and sometimes even elevated to hero status,” Ms Wooldridge said.

“Name That Point isn’t about telling people what to do or how to run their lives. It actually invites Victorians to tell us how they’d like our community’s relationship with alcohol to change. And we know that we’re ready for a change: a 2013 Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education national poll found that 75 per cent of Australians believe we have a problem with excessive drinking.

“It’s about having an open and honest discussion about levels of alcohol consumption and informing people so that they can make an informed own choice about their drinking.”

VicHealth CEO Jerril Rechter added that drinking is expected at most social events, including baby showers, picnics and sports matches.

“We’re now at a point where you need a socially acceptable reason not to drink, like being pregnant or driving,” Ms Rechter said.

“As much as alcohol is part and parcel with many of our celebrations, we can’t ignore the fact that it is also a serious issue, and excessive drinking is damaging people’s health and their lives.

“Name That Point gives young Victorians a chance to talk honestly about how alcohol affects them personally, as well as share their views on what we should do about it.

“We will use what we learn from the community over this summer to find solutions that start to reshape Victoria’s alcohol culture into one that embraces moderation, rather than applauding excess and harm.”

Name that Point is the major campaign of a $3.9 investment in promoting healthier attitudes to drinking and drunk behaviour.

As well as the Victorian Government investment in Name that Point, VicHealth has committed more than $1.3 million towards alcohol culture change, including funding for further research into alcohol harms among young adults; and a new partnership with online peer-support forum Hello Sunday Morning.

Name That Point is designed by international award-winning agency McCann, famous for their 2012 Cannes winner Dumb Ways to Die campaign for Metro Trains.

The Victorian Government and VicHealth have commissioned research to measure the success of the campaign over time with a survey focusing on attitudes towards drunkenness at the start of the project and again at the end.

Media contacts:
Michael Moore 0400 719 355 michael.moore@minstaff.vic.gov.au  (Minister Wooldridge)
Jane Gardner 0435 761 732 jgardner@vichealth.vic.gov.au  (VicHealth)