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Wisconsin ranks the highest in the nation for excessive alcohol use which includes binge drinking, drinking while pregnant, heavy drinking and underage drinking. The State Council on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse (SCAODA) released a comprehensive report looking at ways to reduce excessive alcohol consumption in Wisconsin. Alcohol-related death rates for Wisconsinites have been rising (disease related deaths and poisonings) as well as other alcohol related fatalities, including car crashes, suicide, and unintentional injury. Excessive alcohol use can cause harm to others due to assaults, batteries, domestic violence, as well as cause many health-related issues.

Moving Forward: Policies and Strategies to Prevent and Reduce Excessive Alcohol Use in Wisconsin

Analysis and Recommendations for Addressing and Reducing Excessive Alcohol Use in Wisconsin (December 2021)

Wisconsin State Council on Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse (SCAODA)
Prevention Committee
Alcohol Prevention Ad-Hoc Workgroup

The goal of this report is to provide evidence-based research regarding policies to keep the health, safety, and prosperity of Wisconsin’s residents in good stead.

Unhealthy and dangerous drinking among Wisconsin’s adult population remains disturbingly high. These actions create an environment that too often, our children and youth will model. It is critical we all work towards providing a safer environment for our families, friends, and neighbors.

This is a public health and safety concern that must be addressed at the population level in order to create healthy and safe communities for all.

View the full SCAODA report (PDF)

How Wisconsin Can Reduce Excessive Alcohol Use

The SCAODA report is set up based on who can change rules, regulations, or policies. Recommendations cover many aspects of alcohol in our lives:

  1. Modify the drinking environment. Focused on reducing the acceptability of underage, heavy and binge drinking.
  2. Increase cost of alcohol. Focused on the true cost of excessive alcohol use as well as evidenced-based recommendations to reduce youth consumption and lessen reducing heavy and binge drinking.
  3. Reduce promotion of alcohol to youth. Focused on limiting attractiveness and advertising of alcohol to reduce youth consumption.
  4. Reduce availability of alcohol.
  5. Support evidence-based alcohol education. Focus includes evidenced-based policy and programming for educators and staff, K-12 education, higher education, and community groups.
  6. Engage in preventive health care. Focused on reversing alcohol-related disease and death trends.
  7. Enact laws and regulations. Focused on filling voids in the current alcohol regulatory system.
  8. Monitor and evaluate. Focused on improving data collection systems.

Using the SCAODA Report

This report is designed to help the user find how they can be impactful regarding Wisconsin’s alcohol environment in order to create a safe and healthier Wisconsin for all. The intent is the recommendations provided in this report will be used in your community, with coalitions looking to reduce harm of excessive use of alcohol; with healthcare systems, and providers; with municipalities, counties, and state government officials; and with decision makers and lawmakers of all types and levels of government so they all can make informed decisions to create safer and healthier communities.

The 61 recommendations in this report are listed under the organizations that should consider the recommendation. When a recommendation should be considered by multiple implementing organizations, the recommendation will appear in all appropriate sections and will have a note indicating where it is cross-listed. The report includes recommendations for the following implementing organizations:

  1. Local Government (Counties; Tribes; Municipalities including Cities, Villages, and Towns; and their various departments, such as law enforcement, etc.)
  2. State Government and State Agencies
  3. Civic, Community, Educational and Religious Organizations
  4. Healthcare Systems and Providers
  5. Alcohol Industry (PDF)