Purpose

Our purpose is simple:  to remove alcohol advertising from NYC public transit to ensure the health, safety, and well-being of our young people.

The board of the MTA recently voted to ban political advertising from the system[1]. All tobacco advertising was removed by 1995 [2]. And yet, alcohol advertising remains. 

Underage drinking does not occur in a vacuum, but is driven in part by community conditions.[3] One of those conditions is alcohol advertising. Research has shown that youth who see more alcohol advertising are more likely to start drinking underage, and if they already drink, drink more.[4]

Furthermore, surveys in New York City have found that underserved communities and communities of color (like Central Harlem and Bedford-Stuyvesant) have intense amounts of alcohol advertising.[5]

Why does this matter?  Underage drinking is a serious problem in NYC:

  • There are nearly 7,000 visits to NYC emergency departments every year related to underage drinking.[6]
  • Underage drinking in NYC is connected to risky sex, unplanned pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections.[7]
  • Binge drinking (the typical pattern for underage drinkers) can lead to permanent deficits in brain functioning[8] which may contribute to risk for depression, anxiety, and other conditions later in life.[9]

For these reasons - and more - alcohol advertising should not be allowed on NYC Public Transit.

Learn more about the issue here.


[1] Fitzsimmons, E.G. (2015, April 29). “M.T.A. board votes to ban political ads on subways and buses.”  New York Times.  Retrieved on May 27, 2015 from http://www.nytimes.com/2015/04/30/nyregion/mta-board-votes-to-ban-political-ads-on-subways-and-buses.html?_r=0

[2] Zane, J.P. (1992, June 27). "In surprise, M.T.A. bans all tobacco advertising." New York Times. Retrieved on June 1, 2015 from http://www.nytimes.com/1992/06/27/nyregion/in-surprise-mta-bans-all-tobacco-advertising.html

[3] cf.  Babor, T.F., Caetano, R., Casswell, S., Edwards, E., Giesbrecht, N., Graham, K. et al. (2010). Alcohol: No ordinary commodity: Research and public policy. (2nd edition). Oxford University Press.

Bonnie, R. J., & O'Connell, M. E. (Eds.). (2004). Reducing underage drinking: A collective responsibility. The National Academies Press.

[4] Tanski, S. E., McClure, A. C., Li, Z., Jackson, K., Morgenstern, M., Li, Z., & Sargent, J. D. (2015). Cued recall of alcohol advertising on television and underage drinking behavior. JAMA Pediatrics, 169(3), 264–271.

Anderson, P., de Bruijn, A., Angus, K., Gordon, R., & Hastings, G. (2009). Impact of alcohol advertising and media exposure on adolescent alcohol use: A systematic review of longitudinal studies. Alcohol and Alcoholism, 44(3), 229–243.

Smith, L. A., & Foxcroft, D. R. (2009). The effect of alcohol advertising, marketing and portrayal on drinking behaviour in young people: systematic review of prospective cohort studies. BMC Public Health, 9, 51.

Pasch, K. E., Komro, K. A., Perry, C. L., Hearst, M. O., & Farbakhsh, K. (2007). Outdoor alcohol advertising near schools: What does it advertise and how is it related to intentions and use of alcohol among young adolescents? Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs, 68(4), 587–596.

Collins, R. L., Ellickson, P. L., McCaffrey, D., & Hambarsoomians, K. (2007). Early adolescent exposure to alcohol advertising and its relationship to underage drinking. The Journal of Adolescent Health, 40(6), 527–534.

[5] Kwate, N. O. A., Jernigan, M., & Lee, T. (2007). Prevalence, proximity and predictors of alcohol ads in Central Harlem. Alcohol and Alcoholism, 42(6), 635–640.

Kwate, N. O. A., & Lee, T. H. (2007). Ghettoizing outdoor advertising: Disadvantage and ad panel density in black neighborhoods. Journal of Urban Health, 84(1), 21–31.

Pearson, J. (2010, November 2).  “Teens trash Spike Lee over Absolut Brooklyn vodka marketing presence in neighborhood.” NY Daily News.  Retrieved on May 27, 2015 from http://www.nydailynews.com/new-york/teens-trash-spike-lee-absolut-brooklyn-vodka-marketing-presence-neighborhood-article-1.451779

[6] NYCDOHMH (2015, May 3). “Investigation finds that underage New Yorkers Have easy access to alcohol at local pharmacy, grocery, and liquor stores” [media release].  Retrieved on May 26, 2015 from http://www.nyc.gov/html/doh/html/pr2015/pr019-15.shtml

[7] Farley, T., Olson, C., Frazer, M.S., Kerker, B. (2008). Alcohol use and risky sex in New York City. NYC Vital Signs, 7(6), 1–4

[8]  Vetreno, R., & Crews, F. (2015). Binge ethanol exposure during adolescence leads to a persistent loss of neurogenesis in the dorsal and ventral hippocampus that is associated with impaired adult cognitive functioning. Frontiers in Neuroscience9, 35.

[9] Pandey, S. C., Sakharkar, A. J., Tang, L., & Zhang, H. (2015). Potential role of adolescent alcohol exposure-induced amygdaloid histone modifications in anxiety and alcohol intake during adulthood. Neurobiology of Disease. doi:10.1016/j.nbd.2015.03.019

Boutros, N., Semenova, S., Liu, W., Crews, F. T., & Markou, A. (2015). Adolescent intermittent ethanol exposure is associated with increased risky choice and decreased dopaminergic and cholinergic neuron markers in adult rats. International Journal of Neuropsychopharmacology, 18(2)

Briones, T. L., & Woods, J. (2013). Chronic binge-like alcohol consumption in adolescence causes depression-like symptoms possibly mediated by the effects of BDNF on neurogenesis. Neuroscience, 254, 324–334.

Vetreno, R., & Crews, F. (2015). Binge ethanol exposure during adolescence leads to a persistent loss of neurogenesis in the dorsal and ventral hippocampus that is associated with impaired adult cognitive functioning. Frontiers in Neuroscience9, 35.

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  • published this page in About 2014-08-01 14:35:19 -0400