Govt enlists FH to handle binge-drink crackdown

Fishburn Hedges has clinched the contract for the Government's first responsible drinking campaign.

The Department of Health and Home Office offensive has a budget of £3.5m across all media disciplines.

Kicking off in October, it aims to raise awareness of the dangers of excessive drinking, in terms of personal safety, criminal action and health.

‘Through media relations and partnership activity we want to raise awareness of the dangers of heavy drinking on a regular basis; we want people to realise what they are drinking. At the moment it is a confused picture,' said FH associate director Sarah Schofield.

The targets are 16 to 24-year-olds and the over-35s, who have been identified as the worst offenders in the Government's Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy.

Alcohol-related health problems have soared, with the number of hospital admissions doubling in the past decade. One in five violent crimes takes place in or around a drinking venue, and 80 per cent of sexual attacks on women occur after the victim has been drinking, said Schofield.

‘It is possible to make a difference to people's attitudes. Smoking was once socially acceptable, but isn't any longer,' she added. The campaign will also feature advertising by United London.

FH's contract lasts until the end of next March, although the campaign will continue beyond that.

The hire racks up yet another flagship Government campaign for FH, adding to drug brief Frank, road safety account Think! and the anti-smoking drive.

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