New research compares a big night out for urban & outer urban young people

The Young adults and alcohol report is the latest in an on going exploration of alcohol cultures and patterns of use between inner urban and outer urban young people.

It found that whilst drinking patterns and alcohol-related harms did not differ substantially for young people across inner urban & outer urban settings, there are some differences that policy makers and Youth AOD workers should know about.

The report findings serve as a good reminder that there is no one generic ‘harm minimisation conversation’ and talking about harm with a young person requires understanding of the unique circumstances that contribute to or minimise harm for them.

It is further reminder that harm has as much to do with resources, environmental factors (such as proximity to the city) and cultural norms as it does with consumption.

Key Findings

  • Heavy drinking is an entrenched aspect of recreation for young adults from inner- and outer-urban Melbourne and many interview participants reported finding it hard to socialise if they didn’t consume alcohol.
  • Getting drunk before travelling to entertainment precincts led to more problems for those  living in outer-urban areas because of the distances they needed to travel.
  • Outer-urban young adults had greater involvement than inner-urban young people as both offenders and victims Friday and Saturday night assaults with young men who lived in the outer-suburbs more likely to believe that friends should jump into fights to defend a mate.
  • Outer-urban young adults also experienced greater difficulties in travelling home at the end of a night out, some describing being stranded in the city when they missed the last train or tram.