Alcohol Action conference begins in Wellington

3 News 22 Mar 2012
New Zealand’s first ‘Babies, Children and Alcohol’ conference is set to begin at Wellington’s Te Papa this morning. The conference will focus on solutions to alcohol-related harm sustained by children in New Zealand, and has been organised by Alcohol Action NZ (AANZ). The one-day event will feature a number of guest speakers, opportunities for discussion, and allocated time for responses from politicians. The conference will begin at 9am with an opening address from Children’s Commissioner Dr Russell Wills. AANZ spokesperson Professor Doug Sellman says on the day of the conference, “200 alcohol-related physical and sexual assaults will occur in New Zealand”, some of which will “directly impact” on children. Another spokesperson, Professor Geoff Robertson, says the Government “has shown woeful leadership” in addressing New Zealand’s drinking culture, and the conference will highlight “the strength of the scientific evidence about how a society can reduce alcohol-related damage… with a particular focus on positive outcomes for children”. AANZ says up to 3,000 unborn children suffer alcohol-related brain damage each year.
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