We support the call issued today from the WA Branch of the Public Health Association of Australia (PHAA) for all parties to #ThinkPublicHealth in to lead up to the State Election.
Two of the priorities from the PHAA are of particular interest to us given their links to risk factors associated to cancer. These include calls for the State Government to:
- Introduce an immediate ban on advertising of unhealthy food and drink on all state-owned assets, including public transport and public transport waiting areas, children's sporting events and all venues where families gather.
- Introduce a minimum unit price for alcohol that is applied per standard drink for all alcohol products to reduce the prevalence of injury, family violence, chronic diseases, child abuse, road trauma and cancer.
Our Cancer Prevention and Research Director Melissa Ledger said more alcohol means more harm for individuals, families and communities.
"Alcohol retailers are flooding WA communities with cheap alcohol and discounts to encourage people to buy more alcohol.
"We need the government to hold the industry to a higher standard.
"Setting a minimum price below which alcohol products cannot be sold will stop the industry pushing cheap alcohol on people who are vulnerable.
"The PHAA call adds to the collective voice of WA's leading health agencies who are all pleading with the State Government to stop selling advertising space to junk food companies.
"The aggressive marketing tactics of these products are contributing to record numbers of West Australians being overweight or obese, which puts these people at risk of 13 types of cancer," Ms Ledger says.