We are aware that getting drunk is deemed a rite of passage for many young Scots and that being around alcohol and those who are consuming alcohol can increase the risk of exposure to aggressive behaviour, which can escalate into violence. This is supported by data captured in YouthLink Scotland’s recent response to the Scottish Government consultation on restricting alcohol advertising and marketing.
We know that promoting alcohol in private/public places/spaces and events and increasingly via online platforms, increases exposure to vulnerable groups, including children and young people and those in recovery to intrusive alcohol adverts. Currently, advertising and promoting alcohol normalises alcohol consumption and helps sustain high population consumption levels.
The non-formal youth work approach can be more effective at creating meaningful dialogue and, in turn, create the culture and behavioural shifts required to break the unhealthy pattern of binge drinking and the interpersonal and inter-community violence that often results. We believe restricting the promotion and advertising of alcohol would go some way to realising this aim and creating a healthier and safer Scotland for all.