The WA Government is calling on the Commonwealth, States and Territories to immediately support the introduction of mandatory pregnancy health warnings on alcoholic beverages.
Currently, voluntary industry labelling on alcoholic beverages means that many products do not carry important pregnancy health warnings.
Mandatory labelling to increase awareness of the dangers of alcohol during pregnancy at the point of purchase and consumption is long overdue.
Inaction to implement effective mandatory labels on this important issue is putting the lives of unborn children at risk.
Alcohol can disturb the development of an embryo or fetus. If a fetus is exposed to alcohol, it can result in a range of adverse effects to the brain and organs of the unborn child, collectively known as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD).
There is no cure for FASD and its effects last a lifetime. Experts agree that pregnant women should avoid alcohol consumption.
As the nature and degree of adverse effects of alcohol exposure to the brain and organs of the unborn child is hard to predict, no alcohol during pregnancy is the safest option.
Women who are concerned about their alcohol use during pregnancy or their child’s development should talk to a health professional or call the Alcohol and Drug Support Line on 9442 5000.