Youth and Alcohol ALAC Youth Drinking Monitor

This report presents the results of the ALAC Youth Drinking Monitor for 2002. This monitor is the fifth survey in a series commenced in 1997 to evaluate and give direction to ALAC’s strategy for Youth.

Interviewing for this survey took place between 9 April and 30 May, 2002. A total sample of 359 Youth aged between 13 and 18 were interviewed. As for previous monitors, the sample was evenly divided between Mäori and non-Mäori, to allow for the examination of results by ethnicity.

Whilst this monitor is the third survey conducted after the legal drinking age was lowered to 18 on 1 December 1999, 18-year-old teenagers have been included in the sample to make possible comparisons with previous surveys.

Also included in the sample, for the second time, is a sample of 13-yearold teenagers. The decision to include these young people was made in order to investigate the prevalence and frequency of risky drinking amongst this age group. Note, however, that the number of 13-year-olds interviewed was small and that the results are therefore only indicative.

The analysis of the results for this survey has been mainly based on 1417 year olds. To make direct comparisons possible, the results for the 2000 and 2001 surveys have been re-analysed by the same age group.

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Commissioning agencies
Date of last publication
Aug 2002


The overall purpose of the current survey (April/May 2002) was to continue measuring changes in Youth attitudes and behaviour towards risky drinking; thereby giving further direction and focus to ALAC’s youth strategy.

More specifically, the questioning was focused on:

  • The concerns that Youth have generally, and whether alcohol is considered to be a concern. That is, is it an item on their agenda?
  • Attitudes about drinking alcohol and drinking behaviour in general, but particularly with regard to risky drinking.
  • The incidence and frequency with which Youth drink alcohol, with a particular focus on risky drinking.
  • What sort of alcohol Youth are drinking and where they are buying or accessing it from.
  • Youth perceptions of the consequences of risky drinking, and the negative outcomes they have personally experienced.
  • Knowledge of "keeping safe" strategies when faced with the choice of drinking alcohol.
  • Youth perceptions about parental interaction with Youth in regard to alcohol, including their involvement in supervising alcohol use and providing alcohol.
  • Awareness of the laws regarding the supply of alcohol to minors by 17 and 18 year old Youth.


As for previous surveys, the current ALAC Youth Drinking Monitor was conducted by telephone, with BRC interviewers calling randomly selected households and then, within selected households, randomly selecting Youth aged between 13 and 18 inclusive. Some initial focus is given to contacting male Youth, due to the fact that they are more mobile and are therefore less likely to be at home.

Interviewing took place between 9 April and 30 May 2002. The total sample of 359 Youth was evenly divided between Mäori and non-Mäori Youth, to allow for the analysis of results to be completed by ethnicity, although quotas were also set in terms of age and gender. Weighting at the processing stage corrected for this stratification and ensured the total sample was representative of the age group in question.

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