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Responsible Drinking Messages Are Effective

ducational programs are effective. Recent polls have demonstrated that fewer consumers are driving after they drink. A Gallup Poll conducted for M.A.D.D. in September 1991 found that of those who drink, over the last couple of years, almost nine in ten (88%) said they have taken precautions or chosen not to drive when they have been drinking. And of those who drink occasionally, but have not changed their behavior over the last couple of years, the most commonly cited reasons for not changing were that "they don't drink much or drink in moderation" (59%), or that they already "don't drink and drive."

In addition, a Roper survey reported by the Harvard Alcohol Project documents the wide acceptance -- and strong popularity -- of the designated driver concept in the United States. An impressive ninety-three (93) percent of adults felt it was a "good" idea or an "excellent" idea to use a designated driver in Roper's 1991 survey.

While the work must continue to fight alcohol abuse, it is clear that past efforts are having the desired effect. Many consumers are getting the message and the vast majority are enjoying alcohol beverages responsibly. Broad-brush approaches which have no scientific basis or record of success are not the answer and are highly counter-productive. Alcohol education programs and responsible drinking messages are producing success in the fight against alcohol abuse.