Alkoholpolitik und Volksgesundheit

9 May: A Better Europe Is Possible

Mittwoch 9. Mai 2012 von htm

Three easy ways for a stronger, more just and freer Europe
Europe celebrates today the 62nd anniversary of the Schumann Declaration, the first move towards the European Union, which still faces an unprecedented economic, social and political crisis. Young Europeans and youth organizations are disproportionately exposed to the negative effects of this crisis.
But there are three simple and effective ways towards a stronger, fairer and freer Europe, as the European youth organization Active – sobriety, friendship and peace, through the President Andrea Lavesson is outlining today:

“The first one is stronger youth organizations in Europe to harness their role and power in protecting youth, combating the crisis and achieving the EU2020 targets and in promoting innovation and democracy.” …

“The second one is a new and better EU alcohol strategy to protect children and young people from the tremendous alcohol harm in Europe, to improve the productivity of the EU and to secure the European Social Model.” …

“A new and better EU alcohol strategy will contribute to making Europe more productive, protecting the Social Model and saving and improving the lives of young Europeans,” says Andrea Lavesson.

“And last but not least, the third one is a stronger commitment to making the Human Rights of children and youth in Europe a lived reality in policy making to prevent them from growing up in poverty.” …

(Source: Press Release Active, 05/9/12)

Kategorie: Alerts, Allgemein, Children, Events, Global, Newsletter, Politics, Prevention, Publications, societal effects, Watchdogs, Youth | Keine Kommentare »

9 Million Children of Alcoholics in Europe deserve hope and dreams

Mittwoch 22. Februar 2012 von htm

Press release from Active – Sobriety, Friendship and Peace:

Today is Valentine’s Day and it is also one day of the week for Children of alcoholics (CoA). The awareness week for CoA serves to raise attention for the situation and feelings of the affected, and it serves to make sure the fate of millions of young Europeans is not forgotten and doesn’t remain invisible.

There are 9 Million children and young people in the EU alone who grow up with at least one parent being
alcohol addicted. These children suffer neglect, feelings of shame and self-blame for their parents’ alcohol addiction. They suffer from continuous conflicts in their home and many have to witness and endure violence.

“The problem is big and despite some good and useful steps into the right direction, more can and must be done to prevent destroyed childhoods,” says Andrea Lavesson, President of Active – sobriety, friendship and peace. “Valentine’s Day offers the best opportunity to extent our hearts to embrace the pain and suffering of 9 million innocent children and young people.”

Europe is the heaviest alcohol consuming region in the world, where alcohol is a causal factor in 16% of child abuse and neglect cases. Studies show that CoA are much more exposed to other health risks, to negative influences on their intellectual capacity and their mental health. Research also shows that one third of CoA will become alcohol addicted themselves.

“Children and young people with alcohol addicted parents often live in both emotional and material poverty,”
says Andrea Lavesson from Active.
(Source: Eurocare Newsletter, 02/20/12)

“It is a moral, economic and social imperative to prevent harm, invest into the present of children and young people, into their hopes and dreams. We need a new EU alcohol strategy, evidence-based alcohol policies in the countries; municipalities need to invest in support structures for CoA; schools need effective alcohol policies; teachers need know-how in how to identify children and youth; journalists need to help breaking the taboo that still exists around this issue. And as society we need to make sure that children of alcohol addicted parents feel that they too can have a better life one day.”

Kategorie: Alerts, Allgemein, Children, Events, Global, Health, Parents, Prevention, Publications, societal effects, Statistics, Violence and crimes, Watchdogs, Youth | Keine Kommentare »

EU: Barroso promotes special interests instead of welfare of young Europeans

Freitag 25. November 2011 von htm

The financial crisis in Europe is affecting young people’s overall emotional well-being and capacity to learn. A report from Glasgow City Council highlights how pupils’ emotional stability underpins their ability to learn. In Estonia a notable rise in abuse of alcohol among youth is reported. However, EU countries report that social spending is bearing the heaviest austerity burden: e.g. the German “savings package” requires 37% of the savings to be taken from social spending.

At the same time the President of the European Commission Mr. Barroso finds the time to attend a gala of the alcohol lobbyist Brewers of Europe, to join their special interests by recognizing the “important contribution to European economy. And the value added of the sector to the economy is estimated at €50 Billion.”

The costs of the social harm caused by alcohol every year in the EU, however, are more than twice of that sum: €125 Billion.
“Mr. Barroso displays exactly the kind of thinking that got us into the crisis in the first place. Short-term profit thinking instead of long-term vision rooted in sustainable policies”, says Andrea Lavesson, President of Active – sobriety, friendship and peace.

The EU is the heaviest alcohol consuming region in the world. Only the economic consequences, let alone the social and democratic harm, are enormous: productivity losses because of alcohol (absenteeism, unemployment and premature death) amount to €59 Billion per year.
In the face of these facts, it remains a riddle how the President of the European Commission can say things like: “And indeed the Commission looks to your industry as a key partner in pushing forward our growth agenda towards a more smart, inclusive and sustainable Europe, our Europe 2020 agenda.” … (Source: JOINT PRESS RELEASE by Active and The European Youth Forum (YFJ), 25.11.11)

Kategorie: Alcohol industry, Alcohol taxes, Alerts, Allgemein, Binge Drinking, Europaparlament / EU-Kommission, Global, Health, Internationales, mortality, Parliaments / Governments, Personalities, Politics, Price, Social Costs, Statistics, Workplace, Youth | Keine Kommentare »

Open Letter to President of EU-Parliament on “cash-for-amendments” scandal

Montag 4. April 2011 von htm

My name is Andrea Lavesson and I am President of Active – sobriety, friendship and peace. Active is a European youth umbrella NGO with 38 member organizations in 27 countries from all over Europe.
In this letter I am sending you our thoughts and experiences as well as our wishes – in reaction to the most recent unveiling of the “cash-for-amendments” scandal that threatens the trust of young Europeans in the independence of their elected representatives.
That four corruption cases involving MEPs , from different political groups and countries, have been discovered by journalists and that more discoveries seem to be likely has shocked and surprised us. We are truly worried and quite frankly alarmed. We wonder about what the implications are for the political efforts of so many of our members and their initiatives towards the European Parliament.
Many Active members from all over Europe engage in advocacy to share their visions of a better Europe. We write e-mails with ideas and questions. We call and we try to meet MEPs, when we have the (financial) resources to go to Brussels. (Source: OpenLetterActive110404) Comment: In Switzerland the Social Democrats just start with a people’s initiative which demands that all political parties have to declare the sources of their income. Most of the Swiss members of parliament are lobbyists.

Kategorie: Alcohol industry, Alerts, Allgemein, Europaparlament / EU-Kommission, Global, Parliaments / Governments, Personalities, Politics, Publications, Schweiz, societal effects, Watchdogs | Keine Kommentare »

100 years women’s fight passed by alcohol industry unnoticed

Dienstag 8. März 2011 von htm

Active criticizes alcohol industry’s distorting picture of women.
Andrea Lavesson, Active President, explains that “the alcohol industry objectifies girls and women in two ways: since in most countries the alcohol use of girls and women used to be lower than of men, especially girls and women have been identified as new market. Girls and women became the new target group for increasing profits. The second form of objectification can be seen in the commercials: women are displayed as sexual objects.”
In fact, to seduce girls and women to start drinking and increase their use of alcohol, the alcohol industry does not consider ethics: tapping into gender stereotypes is their strategy. Therefore they designed “diet” alcoholic beverages, developed a variety of fruit flavoured beer that soon was called “chick beer” and promote these products in connection with items, like handbags, high heels, make-up, that are highly associated with women. (Source: Active press release, 03/08/11) Comment: Not to forget that is was the protest of women, the „Suffragettes“, against the alcohol industry, which brought in several countries the right of vote to women.

Kategorie: Advertising, Alcohol industry, Allgemein, consumption, Events, Gender, Global, societal effects, Watchdogs, Youth | Keine Kommentare »

Spending money is not enough to stop the AIDS epidemic

Mittwoch 1. Dezember 2010 von htm

Active urges for more coherent strategies to stop the spread of HIV/ AIDS.
Active – sobriety, friendship and peace commemorates the World AIDS Day by sending our compassion to millions of victims and by urging decision makers to do more in fighting HIV/ AIDS.
The European Commission announced two things on the eve of World AIDS Day: a 10% increase in contributions, spending €1.3 billion to fight AIDS as well as a stronger effort to improve “early detection” allowing better and earlier treatment of the disease.
“Our members welcome the effort to step up action. But spending money is not enough. Improving testing is not enough. What we need is a coherent approach to fighting the AIDS epidemic. We want an effort to preventing HIV infections. That means that the EU, national governments as well as development NGOs need to take into consideration the role of alcohol,” according to Andrea Lavesson, President of Active.
The link between alcohol and the spread of HIV/ AIDS has been long known. But alcohol’s role in the AIDS epidemic continues to be neglected. Both in 2008 in Cape Town and in 2009 at the WHO expert conference in Stockholm alcohol’s role in the AIDS epidemic were on the agenda and the picture of the reviews became clear: Alcohol use increases risk taking in both injection drug use and sexual intercourse; it also increases the number of different sexual partners; the disease develops much faster in infected persons who drink. Alcohol weakens the immune system. …(Source: Press release Active, 12/01/10) ActiveHIVday2010

Kategorie: Allgemein, Health, HIV, Statistics, Watchdogs, Youth | Keine Kommentare »

Alcohol is not like oat – the European Commission of all should know!

Donnerstag 28. Oktober 2010 von htm

Today, in reaction to calls from their Thai partners and friends, young Europeans send an urgent call to the European Commission, the Member States of the EU and the broader public: alcohol is no ordinary commodity!
Andrea Lavesson, president of Active – sobriety, friendship and peace, explains the background: “We have received calls for support from our Thai friends in protecting the health and social safety of young people in Thailand, where right now the European Commission is conducting negotiations with the Thai government about mutual Free Trade Agreement. The problem is, and that bothers many young people in Thailand, that the European Commission puts pressure on the Thais to include alcohol into the Free Trade Agreement even though the Thai government is against it for the simple reason – to protect public health.”

In fact, the negotiations have been put on halt for the Thai government to consult with civil society and assess the health and social impacts if alcohol be included as trade commodity in the Free Trade Agreement (FTA). While civil society protests against an inclusion, the business sector of importers, hotels, tourism enterprises, restaurants and alcohol industry mount heavy campaigns to get alcohol from Europe into the country.

Alcohol costs the Europeans 125 Billion tax payers € per year, an amount that is more than four times higher than what alcohol production, retail and consumption contribute to the economy. A disproportionate amount of the medical, psychological and social costs has to be shouldered by young Europeans under 25. Despite these facts and the apparent economical imbalance, the European Commission labels alcohol as an important agro-food export commodity.

“This alarms both Thai and European youth – and together we say: alcohol is not like oat. It’s surely no ordinary commodity,” says Andrea Lavesson, “even the WHO global alcohol strategy reflects that truth by stating that Public health should be given proper deference in relation to competing interests. We demand that the European Commission protects the integrity of that document that all EU Member States have ratified this year.”

“In Europe we make the experience every day that the alcohol industry makes its way to the decision makers”, tells Andrea Lavesson, “therefore it is important to understand that the alcohol industry’s business methods in developing countries are – and I’m not exaggerating – highly immoral. Alcohol industry violates their own codes of conduct wherever possible and target young people. Beer girls are, among other methods, used to promote alcohol drinks and increase sales.”
Andrea Lavesson sends a clear message to the European Commission and Member States: “Such an industry should not be invited to the table of diplomatic negotiations! If not the European Commission, who is to safe guard the interests of young people and to be a role model in public health protection?”

Kind regards and we, wish you a great day!
press release. For immediate release 28th October 2010

Kategorie: Advertising, Alcohol industry, Alerts, Development, Documents, Europaparlament / EU-Kommission, Global, Health, Parliaments / Governments, Politics, Prevention, Social Costs, Statistics, Verschiedene, WHO, Youth | Keine Kommentare »

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