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Money needed to target alcohol-related issues in Pacific

Burnet Institute

09 May, 2011

Her submission titled ‘Substance use as a trigger for gendered and interpersonal violence and barrier to economic and social development objectives’ was one of 16 presented on the day.

Lucina’s report highlights the need for more money to be allocated for programs to target alcohol-related issues in the Pacific region.

Results from a survey of 519 participants in Fiji showed 44 of those people were forced to have sex, of those, 33 reported both they and their partner were under the influence of alcohol.

In the six months prior to the survey, 13 per cent reported being victim of violence, ranging from verbal, physical and/or sexual with 71 per cent of the perpetrators under the influence at the time of the assault.

“These findings suggest there is a need for further investigation in to the role alcohol and other drugs plays in Pacific communities…Such data will help in refining and targeting policy and program responses,” the report states.

Three main recommendations were put to the roundtable:

  • A harm minimisation framework should be developed to respond to alcohol and other drug issues in the Pacific region
  • Sensitisation to drug and alcohol issues should be integrated into existing violence prevention programs in the pacific region
  • Existing tools for violence prevention should be employed in innovative ways to achieve culturally and contextually appropriate responses to substance use as a trigger for violence in the Pacific

The report concluded, “Significant advocacy efforts are required to ensure responding to substance use and in particular alcohol consumption, as a trigger for violence is on the agenda for government and policy makers across the Pacific.

“To ensure program sustainability, it is essential that indigenous capacity to design, implement, monitor and evaluate interventions is developed.”

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Burnet Institute

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