Today's Tea Break

It’s been a great Olympics for the Australian team, with a medal haul of 17 Gold, 7 Silver, 22 Bronze and many more performances where courage and commitment shone bright. Millions of viewers tuned in to watch the Olympics that were broadcast largely on Australia’s timezones. With COVID lockdowns occurring in some States, this also enabled more people to watch this epic sporting event. Yet, with this great opportunity to watch loved sports came two issues of public health importance. The first was the amount of junk food advertising that was embedded within the Olympics. A great piece by Kathryn Backholer and colleagues which was published in Croakey sums up these issues.
Read the Cuppa
The second issue is that as the Olympics were broadcast live, this opened up an opportunity for alcohol advertising. Currently, there is a loophole in the regulations that govern what can be shown on TV and when, allowing alcohol advertisements to be aired during live sport. Studies have shown that the earlier children are exposed to alcohol advertising, the earlier they start drinking. So although there were many positives about the Tokyo Olympics, from a public health perspective, there were also a number of negatives.

Our News and Events

2021 Local Government Policy Awards - New closing date for submissions
Children ∙ Health ∙ Environment
The 2021 Local Government Policy Awards are now open. The awards recognise and celebrate Local Governments who prioritise the health and wellbeing of children through the implementation of innovative sustainable projects and programs supported by strong public health policy. We have decided to extend the application process to allow local governments more time to prepare their submissions. Details of the awards presentation ceremony will follow in due time.
Local Governments are invited to submit in the following categories
  • Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Child & Young Persons Health
  • Diversity, Inclusion or Multicultural Child & Young Persons Health
  • Consulting with Children
  • Young People Making a Difference in Communities
  • Mental Health and Wellbeing for Children and Young People
  • COVID Recovery and Response for Children and Young People
  • Creating Healthy Environments for Children and Young People
  • Promoting Healthy Behaviours for Children and Young People
Nominations are also open for the new ‘Trailblazer Award’, which recognises new and innovative projects where Local Government has stepped outside the comfort zone of the way they traditionally approach child health issues and projects. You can nominate any entry for a Trailblazer Award throughout the application process.
Start your application today by clicking here. Applications close COB Friday 24th September 2021. If you have any questions please contact the PHAI project team.
We look forward to reading about the wonderful projects happening out there!


Local Government Alcohol and Young People Study
Local governments play an important role in developing strategies to address community issues and keep young people safe. This often involves strategies that contribute to reducing harmful alcohol use. If you work in the local government sector and can provide information about the alcohol strategies in your area, this survey is for you. For more information, contact

Local Governments' decade of organisational change to promote child health and wellbeing: a Western Australian qualitative study
In 2020, the Local Government Children’s Policy Awards celebrated its 10th anniversary. To celebrate this, PHAI team members developed a journal article based on the 10 years of feedback from the submitting local government. You can read the article here.

Ending Trachoma
The team were in the Northern Goldfields last week working to support the healthy homes program. We had a huge support team including Bega, Goldfields Public Health Unit, the Environmental Health Directorate, City of Kalgoorlie-Boulder and Ngangganawili Aboriginal Health Service. We conducted home assessments, school based activities and a community event. We also had an unusual friend join us!
In other exciting news, the WA Trachoma Storybooks are being mailed out!
If you would like a copy please email us at or to request a copy to be mailed out to you.

Public Health Sector Updates

Summer Healthy Sporting Club Program now open!
Healthway are now accepting applications for our 2021-22 Summer Healthy Sporting Club Program. Funding is available to all Western Australian community sporting clubs to help increase healthy food and drink options at club-run canteens or kiosks. To apply or to find out more about the Summer Healthy Sporting Club Grants visit the website. The funding program will close at 12pm, Friday 24 September 2021.


scienceXart: food for thought competition
The National Committee for Nutrition is hosting this year’s scienceXart competition for Australian Primary school students. The competition is supported by Dietitians Australian and celebrates 2021, the International Year of Fruits and Vegetables. Students are asked to create a plate of food and provide a short 100-words or less description detailing the story and science behind their plate. Find out more here. Email for more information.

Public Health News and Research

If you’re drinking or betting more in lockdown, you’re not alone. COVID restrictions present a variety of challenges and hardships. But for people who have addictions, or who are at risk of developing an addiction lockdowns can pose a unique set of difficulties. Lockdowns have changed the way Australians drink alcohol, use drugs, smoke and gamble. For a portion of people, these behaviours decreased but other Australians have been more likely to reach for a drink during lockdown, or place a bet.


Ignoring IPCC report risks health of Australians. Relying on science for COVID response has served us well, so climate science should be no different, says AMA.
Could drinking 6 cups of coffee a day shrink your brain and increase dementia risk? You may have seen reports about a new study finding that drinking more than six cups of coffee a day could shrink brain volume and increase dementia risk. So if you’re constantly seeking your next caffeine fix, should you be worried?
100 Families WA Full Report. The 100 Families Report - which was proudly launched at the WA Museum Boola Bardip last Friday - found that disadvantaged Western Australian families are increasingly being trapped in a cycle of poverty and hardship by the same system that is designed to support them in crisis.
Parliamentary Committee explores regulation of credit cards and digital wallets for online gambling. An inquiry to investigate and analyse the current use of credit cards and digital wallets to fund online gambling will be held in Canberra on Friday 13 August 2021.
Breastfeeding Communication Strategies, Challenges and Opportunities in the Twitter-Verse: Perspectives of Influencers and Social Network Analysis. Using social media is one important strategy to communicate research and public health guidelines to the scientific community and general public. Empirical evidence about which communication strategies are effective around breastfeeding messaging is scarce. 
Rites of passage: a case study of knowledge translation. On Yuggera Country in south-east Queensland, the Inala Wangarra community organisation is a partner in a research project that shines a light on the strengths of communities and young people.The Inala Wangarra research partnership demonstrates that effective knowledge translation is based upon researchers listening to, learning from and working in partnership with communities.
Advocating for public health initiatives?
Here are some tips that may assist with your advocating efforts:
  • Write a letter to your local politicians
  • Meet with your local politician
  • Write to a media outlet or editor of a local paper
  • Write to a blog
  • Tweet or share on social media
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