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It starts with the parents and ends with the parents.
Alcohol is the most popular recreational drug in Australia. Despite the fact that many people gain enjoyment from alcohol related industries, alcohol is also implicated in much personal trauma and social damage. Parents play a key role in influencing alcohol use and driver behaviour in young people. The aim of this study was to gain an understanding of the attitudes and concerns of parents in Melbourne in relation to their teenage children’s use of alcohol and how they educate and/or provide role models for their adolescents with respect to alcohol usage. A convenience sample of parents with adolescent children participated in focus groups. Parents described patterns of alcohol use and perceived influences on consumption. They reported that they wanted to create safe environments for adolescents to consume alcohol but that they needed more support and information on which to base these decisions. There is an opportunity for public health policy makers to specifically address parents and enhance their role in alcohol related road safety.