The surprising findings are contained in a major new report from the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, which reveals fewer 12 to 17 year olds are making the decision to consume alcohol, and those who do are waiting until they are almost 16 to have their first drink.
The National Drug Strategy Household Survey shows the number of teens abstaining from alcohol has increased from 64 per cent to 72 per cent over the last three years alone.
The number of young Australians choosing not to smoke has also increased significantly, from 72 per cent to 77 per cent over the same period, and young smokers are also waiting until they are almost 16 before they experiment with their first cigarette, up from an average age of just over 14 years in 1995.
This is fantastic news for Nanny Staters, as it renders them useless. Well, more useless.
If teenagers are making their own decisions about alcohol and tobacco that line up with what Nanny Staters think about alcohol and tobacco, then we don’t need any more laws that restrict human behaviour.
Besides, it’s not as if the current laws are working at all:
[AIHW spokesman] Mr Neideck said it was too early to tell whether specific government policies like plain packaging were behind the downward trend.
The IPA’s Simon Breheny could have told you that.