Collect your thoughts and facts
It is worth doing your own assessment to identify the specific problem/s and the extent of these. Here are some questions to assist.
- What behaviours are concerning you? What impact are these having on the club, its facilities and its members? Are the problems having, or likely to have, an impact on people outside of the club?
- Are there particular people or groups of people that are associated with the problems? Who are these people and what relationship do they have with the club?
- Are there particular times or activities that are associated with the problems? What are these and how are these related to the clubs core purpose?
- Are there particular places/areas that are associated with the problems? How is alcohol being sourced/supplied?
- Are the problems new and if so what has changed?
- Does the club have a club licence to sell alcohol? Do the problems indicate there could be breaches of the licence conditions? Have there been any enforcement issues raised by the regulatory agencies?
- Does the club have alcohol sponsorship? If so, by whom and what are the conditions of the sponsorship?
- Who owns the building/facilities the club uses? Who is responsible for their care and maintenance?
- Who makes decisions about the club and how do these decisions get made?
- Consider the specific purposes of your club and any matters that are relevant in light of the problems.
Talk to others
You may not be the only one who has concerns about the impact of alcohol on your club. It will be helpful to know if others share your concerns and if they would support action to address them.
- Talk to other members you can trust in order to assess their level of concern.
- Talk (sensitively) to others outside of the club to get a broader perspective and assess whether there might be support for change.
Please check out the section on Mobilising Others to create a plan of action.
Gaining support for action
Once you’ve established the need for action you will need to engage with those who are decision-makers at the club.
- You can talk to the appropriate people individually and/or ask for the matter to be raised at a club meeting.make sure the process is constructive.
When raising concerns it is helpful to have a few possible solutions up your sleeve. This will give people an opportunity to see that there are things that can be done to address the problem, and help make sure the process is constructive.
Raising issues about alcohol can cause tension. Be prepared for this and use your positive communication techniques.
Plan your action
Addressing alcohol issues within a club environment may be as simple as talking those concerned and asking them to comply with the clubs existing rules.
However, some problems may be more deep-seated and need a longer and more sustained plan of action. Here are some ideas to help:
- Get a small group of people together to form an action group
- Brainstorm the issues and what the ideal outcomes would be
- Identify a range of options for achieving each of these outcomes
Consider various levels of action
- high level action such as changes to or developing new club policies and membership requirements
- mid-level action such as developing signage and alcohol-free options and targeted actions specific to those people, times or places where problems occur.
Others have experienced these problems or similar issues. Join our Facebook Group
Involve others with specialist knowledge and assistance – e.g. licensing inspector at your local council, local police, school principals, Council grounds/venue management and/or community safety staff, health promotion team at your District Health Board/regional public health unit.
- Prepare a plan to achieve your expected outcomes – thinking about the who, what, when, where and how?
There may be costs associated with delivering on the plan. So don’t forget to consider these and whether or not you have access to the required funds. It might be that you have to apply for funds. Please visit our section on funding applications.
If some big changes are required it might be necessary to break them down into stages and tackle it one step at a time.