Cricket Australia criticised for rejecting anti-alcohol advertising in domestic one-day competition
A leading health advocate has accused Cricket Australia of censoring a sponsorship message that campaigns against mixing alcohol and sport because it conflicts with lucrative deals with prominent alcohol brands.
The ABC reported that an advertising message that was to have been displayed around the ground during the current domestic one-day competition, underway in Sydney, had been reworded.
The original advertising, from public health group Healthway, who sponsor the West Australian Cricket Association, read 'Alcohol - think again. Alcohol and sport don't mix'.
However, Cricket Australia apparently insisted on a replacement that reads: 'Alcohol - think again. Under 18 - no alcohol, the safest choice.'
The change has angered Professor Mike Daube of Curtin University, a leading advocate for the McCusker Centre for Action on Alcohol and Youth.
Professor Daube told he told Fairfax media "their priorities are clear.
"They are keen to protect their alcohol sponsors from messages that might offend them but do nothing to stop alcohol promotion that might offend health-promoting sponsors.
Healthway has a deal with the Western Warriors worth more than $2 million which includes their branding featuring in the team name, the Warriors now being known as the 'Alcohol. Think Again Western Warriors'.
Professor Daube addded "(it) is just outrageous ... that Cricket Australia isn't allowing us to put out a very mild message.
"It's not as though Healthway (is) a minor sponsor. It's putting in $2.1 million over three years to support the Western Warriors.
"For that you're not even allowed a relatively mild hoarding saying alcohol and sport don't mix."
Cricket Australia has a five-year sponsorship deal in place with Carlton & United Breweries that pays in the region of $65 million.
16th February 2012 - CRICKET AUSTRALIA FACING TOBACCO ADVERTISING FINES
13th July 2010 - HEALTH CHARITY ADDS PRESSURE TO ALCOHOL AND SPORT SPONSORSHIP DEBATE
28th December 2009 - RUDD AND BENAUD URGE DRINKERS ‘TO DECLARE’
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