This survey is one piece of information which will provide guidance to the Council on attitudes to alcohol in Dunedin and areas of concern which will help to inform a draft Local Alcohol Policy.
Key findings are that:
- People’s attitudes to alcohol are complex and sometimes contradictory and do not always reflect the reality.
- Underage drinking was considered the most significant problem in Dunedin from a list of options (70% of the respondents identified the issue as ‘significant’).
- Most respondents (92%) usually become aware of problems in Dunedin through the media (newsletter, TV and radio) while 73% had personal knowledge, either having been involved in, or have witnessed, an incident.
- Most of the respondents considered that alcohol consumption plays a significant role in physical violence (92%), family/domestic violence (90%), and anti-social behaviour.
- The most common alcohol-related problems experienced by the respondents was witnessing someone passed out or visibly drunk (78%).
- The negative effect of alcohol was most significantly linked to bars and pubs (70%), and the most commonly identified places where alcohol is sold were supermarkets (88%) and bars/pubs (85%).
- Almost two thirds of the respondents (63%) considered that the number of off-licensed premises in their neighbourhood was about right, and more than two thirds of the respondents (71%) considered that the number of on-licensed premises and/or club premises in their neighbourhood was about right.
- The respondents were most happy with the current restrictions for restaurants and cafes (69% considered that the current restrictions are appropriate).
- Most of the respondents (91%) had had an alcoholic drink in the past year and almost all of the respondents (96%) who drink alcohol, drink in their home.
- Many of the respondents were concerned with the problems associated with alcohol, including rubbish, urine and broken glass on the streets. The drinking culture in Dunedin was identified as an unhealthy problem that needs to be addressed.
The People’s Panel findings will form one part of the information presented to the new Council when it decides on the form of a draft Local Alcohol Policy to be submitted to the community for comment. The results will be included in briefings to the Council to inform it of the opinion of the community, as presented by the panel, so that the LAP represents the views of people living with alcohol in their communities.
Other sources of information, from a variety of people and organisations, including the hospitality industry, retailers association, health professionals and the Police, will also be presented to the Council.
It is important that people with a view about alcohol licensing in Dunedin make a submission on the draft policy in writing. There will also be the opportunity to speak to the submission at the subsequent hearings.
The final form of the LAP will ultimately be the Council’s decision after considering all of the information presented, both in written form and at submissions hearings.
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