Linkage Grant to study alcohol harm

Researchers from the Centre for Alcohol Policy Research (CAPR) at La Trobe University have received an Australian Research Centre Linkage Grant to study the nationwide harms individuals cause to other people through drinking.

Dr Anne-Marie Laslett and her team from the Centre for Alcohol Policy Research (CAPR) will use the ARC grant for a three-year study of the costs and harms from others’ drinking.

CAPR partner organisation, the Foundation for Alcohol Research and Education (FARE), is also a major funding partner of Dr Laslett’s project.

“We know from 2008 that women are disproportionally harmed by other people’s drinking in the home while men are harmed more in public places. But we need to better understand the current magnitude, character, economic burden, disparities and causes of alcohol’s harm to others across the Australian population in 2021,” Dr Laslett said.

“The project will include a national survey and analyse the human impacts and costs of crime, community services and health data on the harms caused by others’ drinking.

“This research will produce evidence for partners, government and Australian society that will underpin advocacy, policy and planning aimed at reducing alcohol-related harm and suffering.”

Professor Susan Dodds, La Trobe’s Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Industry Engagement, congratulated Dr Laslett on the successful funding application.

“I am delighted that Dr Laslett and team received this Linkage Grant in a highly competitive environment. Their success recognises La Trobe’s valued contribution to understanding and enhancing public health in Australia and beyond,” Professor Dodds said.

FARE CEO Caterina Giorgi said alcohol contributes to a range of harms that can be devastating for the health, wellbeing and safety of families and the broader community.

“This research will help us to better understand the impact of these harms and ways that we can prevent these harms to keep people healthy and safe,” Ms Giorgi said.

“The successful grant reflects CAPR’s incredible depth of expertise. CAPR has a globally-recognised reputation for research excellence and is a significant contributor to the important body of evidence on alcohol harm and ways to prevent and reduce these harms.”

Adjunct Clinical Professor Diana Egerton-Warburton from project partner Monash Health said she expected the project findings would help shape policy aimed at reducing alcohol harm.

“Emergency department clinicians are seeing increased levels of alcohol-related family violence during this COVID-19 period. These kinds of patterns make this type of data collection and analysis more important than ever,” Professor Egerton-Warburton said.

The CAPR team will work closely with co-investigators and partners FARE, Curtin University, Central Queensland University, the Australian Rechabite Fund, the Australian Institute of Family Studies (AIFS), the Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM), Monash Health, and the Alcohol and Drug Foundation (ADF).

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