What Is The Drinking Age In New Zealand

What Is The Drinking Age In New Zealand?

New Zealand is renowned for its vibrant culture, stunning landscapes and unique government rulings. Drinking is legal in New Zealand for those of the lawful age. In this article, we will explore the legal drinking age of New Zealand and what it means for citizens and visitors.

In December 2019, the legal drinking age in New Zealand increased from 18 to 20. This decision was made by the Health Promotion Agency in an attempt to reduce the amount of young people drinking alcohol, with the aim to reduce the quantity of short-term and long-term harms associated with it. This means that anyone born after 1999, may not purchase alcohol in any store, bar, restaurant, or club.

However, those aged 18 are still able to purchase alcohol if they are directly supervised and provided by a parent or legal guardian aged 20 and over in an off-license liquor retail, which provides liquor for consumption primarily off the premises. Additionally, those aged 18–19 may purchase wine from an on-license premises, such as a restaurant, provided it is accompanied by food.

While the legal drinking age in New Zealand is 20, it is estimated that 64 percent of New Zealanders aged between 15–17 consume alcohol on occasions, with the majority of them obtaining it from adults. This is an alarming statistic that puts young people more at risk of experiencing physical, mental and social harms from the consumption of alcohol.

According to Dr. Christine Rogan-Clarke, Chief Medical Officer of the Health Promotion Agency, “The evidence shows that raising the minimum legal drinking age to 20, would help reduce the amount of young people drinking alcohol, and would have important health gains for the whole population.”

It is well understood in New Zealand that alcohol is harmful to young people’s health, and can cause long-term damage. Therefore the health authorities and government have put strict policies and regulation in place to protect the youth of New Zealand. It is illegal for people aged 20 and under to purchase, supply or consume alcohol in a public place.

The enforcement is highly visible in public areas such as bars and clubs, as these areas employ doormen and other staff that are specifically trained to identify and stop the sale of alcohol to anyone under the age of 20. This is to ensure that young New Zealanders are kept safe and protected from the harms of underage drinking.

Why Is The Legal Drinking Age In New Zealand 20?

The legal drinking age in New Zealand of 20 is an attempt by the government to reduce the harms of alcohol consumption amongst the youth population. The decision was based on extensive research conducted by health authorities and the introduction of more strict policies and enforcement in public areas.

It is estimated that raising the legal drinking age to 20 could reduce the amount of young New Zealanders from drinking alcohol by 10 percent, and drastically reduce the aggregate amount of people drinking excessively. This could mean a significant reduction in the amount of alcohol-related harms experienced by individuals and the wider New Zealand community.

The legal drinking age in New Zealand of 20 is in line with many other countries around the world. In the United States, the age is 21, while in Australia it is also 20. New Zealand is one of many nations that are using strict regulations, enforcement and public education to promote responsible drinking and protect young people from the harms of drinking alcohol.

Alternatives For Young People

For those aged 20 and under, there are many other activities that can be enjoyed in New Zealand. These activities include, going to the local beach, bike-riding, exploring nature, or going to the movies. Young New Zealanders can also take part in a variety of organised sports, such as rugby, cricket, hockey and netball.

There are also plenty of bars and nightclubs that cater for the under-20 crowd. These venues are known as ‘dry bars’, where alcohol is prohibited and only soft drinks are served. This allows young people to enjoy socialising in a safe and alcohol-free environment.

New Zealand has some of the most beautiful natural environments in the world, such as national parks, bush walks and beaches. Exploring these natural areas can be a rewarding experience for young people of all ages.

Additionally, there are plenty of cultural events and activities available such as local art galleries, festivals, and live music events. These events are a great way for young New Zealanders to explore their culture and gain a deeper appreciation of the country’s unique identity.

Why Is It Important To Follow The Legal Drinking Age In New Zealand?

It is important that people respect the legal drinking age in New Zealand, for the safety and health of young people. Consuming alcohol before the age of 20 can cause long-term and irreversible damage to individuals, and put them at risk of experiencing alcohol-related harms.

Therefore, it is essential that young New Zealanders respect the laws around drinking alcohol and be aware of the consequences and risks associated with underage drinking. A responsible and informed attitude towards alcohol is essential for staying safe and making sensible choices.

Furthermore, drinking alcohol can affect the way that you think and behave, and can increase the risk of accidents. It can also put you in dangerous and potentially life-threatening situations such as fights, robberies, and sexual assaults.

By following the legal drinking age in New Zealand, individuals can avoid the potential risks and consequences associated with underage drinking, and make better decisions for their personal health and safety.

Education Around Alcohol

The government and health authorities have also introduced education campaigns to help educate young people on alcohol-related issues. These campaigns involve a variety of initiatives, such as running public awareness campaigns, providing educational materials to schools, and working with community groups and organisations.

Educational campaigns are essential for informing young people about the dangers of drinking. The educational materials are designed to engage and educate young people in a responsible and safe way, and to help them to make informed and sensible decisions.

It is also important for parents and friends to educate younger people about alcohol. This should involve providing them with information on the harms associated with drinking alcohol, the legal drinking age, and responsible drinking. Conversations like these can help young people to understand the risks and consequences of drinking.

Impact Of Raising The Drinking Age

Raising the legal drinking age in New Zealand to 20 has had a noticeable impact on the amount of young people drinking alcohol. This is evidenced by research conducted by the Health Promotion Agency, which suggests that the increase of a legal drinking age from 18 to 20 has had a positive effect in reducing the amount of young people drinking excessively.

Additionally, it is reported that the decision by the Health Promotion Agency to increase the legal drinking age has been well-received by the New Zealand public. This suggests that there is a strong understanding of the importance of protecting young people from the harms of underage drinking, and an appreciation for the work that the government is doing to reduce the harm of alcohol.

In conclusion, it is evident that the decision to increase the legal drinking age in New Zealand has had a positive effect in reducing the amount of young people drinking. This is in line with many other countries around the world, which have implemented similar policies in an attempt to reduce the harm of alcohol in their societies.

Alcohol Addiction and its Treatment

Unfortunately, alcohol can be addictive, and many people struggle to limit their consumption or stop drinking altogether. For those affected by alcohol addiction, there are many forms of treatment available. These include counselling, therapy, online support programmes, and support services.

In New Zealand, there are various organisations that offer specialist help and treatment for those dealing with alcohol addiction. These organisations provide individual support, as well as group therapy sessions, which can be beneficial for those dealing with the issue. Additionally, there are a number of online support programmes available, which can provide support, advice, and helpful resources.

Alcohol addiction can be a difficult issue to overcome, but with the right treatment and support, it is possible to recover. It is important to remember that there is help available, and seek help if needed.

Promoting Responsible Drinking In New Zealand

Educating young people about the harms of drinking alcohol is essential for reducing the risks and promoting the importance of responsible drinking. In New Zealand, the government and health authorities are working on public campaigns to help inform and engage young people in making informed choices about their alcohol consumption.

Additionally, organisations such as the Health Promotion Agency and Alcohol Healthwatch are working to promote responsible drinking and provide resources to help people successfully limit their alcohol consumption. These organisations provide helpful information and advice, as well as support services for those dealing with alcohol addiction.

Promoting the importance of responsible drinking is an essential step in reducing the harm of alcohol in New Zealand. With the right education, policies, and enforcement, it is possible to reduce the risk of alcohol-related harms amongst young people and the wider community.

The Need For A Sensible Approach To Alcohol Consumption

It is essential for New Zealanders to adopt a sensible approach to alcohol consumption. By following the laws around drinking, respecting the legal drinking age, and engaging in responsible practices, the risks and harms associated with drinking can be minimised.

Drinking alcohol can be enjoyed safely and in moderation, and it is important to remember that excessive drinking can lead to serious harms and even death. By being aware of these risks, and acting responsibly, these harms can be avoided.

Ultimately, a responsible attitude towards alcohol is essential for protecting young people from the harms of alcohol consumption and creating a safer society. It is essential that the laws, policies and regulations around drinking are respected, and sensible decisions are made when consuming alcohol.

Valarie Bristol

Valarie B. Bristol is a passionate writer and researcher from New Zealand. She is committed to sharing her knowledge and love of New Zealand with the world. In her free time, Valarie enjoys exploring the countryside and taking pictures of the beautiful landscapes that make up the country. She also loves spending time with her family and friends, cooking, and reading.

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