The Alcohol Workgroup was created in 2002 to develop policy positions on Alcohol issues for the OPHA and to advocate for alcohol policy development on the provincial and community levels. Today, the Alcohol Workgroup keeps public health units abreast of current alcohol issues by monitoring the social and political landscape, communicating actively with stakeholders and responding to requests for information on Ontario government legislation, consultation and policy issues.
The Workgroup also maintains a multi-sectoral group of experts to respond to alcohol issues and works proactively to increase OPHA’s collective capacity with its of key stakeholders to respond to alcohol issues.
On an on-going basis OPHA’s Alcohol Workgroup engages in a variety of activities designed to:
Seek opportunities for OPHA to participate in advocacy with respect to alcohol, at both the provincial and federal levels;
Provide information and recommendations to the public health field so that health units can also take advocacy positions: and
In concert with the Alcohol Policy Network, keep the importance of alcohol use and its impact “on the agenda” in public health and at government levels.
February 2016 Government consultation Government consultation: In-person meeting and written response to the Ontario government’s draft Alcohol Policy Framework
Participated in planning An Alcohol Strategy for Ontario – Promoting Public Health and Community Safety forum to promote awareness and dialogue of effective policies that decrease alcohol harms
Supported advocacy work of the Provincial Alcohol Prevention Steering Committee; a Provincial Alcohol Strategy Framework to address the health harms of alcohol
Released three OPHA Issue Series fact sheets; Alcohol Pricing, Alcohol Marketing, Alcohol Availability
Responded to the announcement about Beer Sales in Grocery Stores by writing a letter to the editor ,developing a position statement and meeting with government officials to express our concerns around increasing alcohol availability in Ontario
Endorsed a Call for a Provincial Alcohol Strategy along with several other health partners in September 2015
Provided a package to Ontario Health Units outlining advocacy tools in response to increasing alcohol availability
In partnership with the Alcohol Management in Municipalities (AMM) Working Group, sent letters to local farmers’ markets and municipalities across Ontario outlining Strategies for Reducing Potential Harms from Sale of VQA Wines at Farmers’ Markets; letters were also sent to Farmers’ Market Ontario, Sustain Ontario, and Association of Municipalities of Ontario
Participated in the Provincial Low Risk Alcohol Drinking Guidelines work group
Alcohol Related OPHA News Articles
Jan 14 - Alcohol pricing promotes a culture of moderation
Feb 11 - OPHA influencing Alcohol Policy
Mar 10 - The Chief Public Health Officer's Report on the State of Public Health in Canada, 2015: Alcohol Consumption in Canada
Apr 7 - Alcohol forum
May 5 - The Power of Persuasion: How does alcohol marketing affect youth?
May 19 - OPHA’s presentation to the Alcohol Policy Forum on why Ontario needs an Alcohol Strategy.
Jun 16 - Rethink Your Drinking
Jun 22 - Consistent Application and Enforcement of Sandy’s Law
Jun 30 - Update on recent developments in alcohol sales
Jul 20 - Letter to Ministry of Finance on provincial increases to alcohol pricing
Jul 28 - Increasing alcohol access through LCBO online sales and delivery
Jul 28 - Seasonal Trends in Alcohol Consumption
Aug 26 - Alcohol & Cancer
Sept 8 - FASD Prevention
Check out our various alcohol related resources here!
Join our Workgroup
Interested in getting involved or finding out more what we do? Send us an email at email@example.com.
The Mission & Mandate
The Alcohol Workgroup’s mission is to strengthen the public health voice regarding alcohol policy. The cornerstones of healthy public policy related to alcohol are:
Effective controls on alcohol: Controls on the physical, economic and social availability of alcohol are not only good for public health, they are good for public finances.
Supportive environments: Policies, programs and other initiatives should strive to build self-esteem; promote healthy living; strengthen the ability of individuals; families and communities to care for one another; and help prevent and reduce alcohol related harm.
Inclusive decision making: Policy discussions should acknowledge the unique health and social consequences of alcohol consumption, as well as the economic impact in the province. Current and future decisions need to be made in an environment that welcomes public discussion, considers a wide range of community groups and facilitates the development of policies that enhance public health and safety.”