FASD update 5 Mar 2013 New Zealand Aotearoa

Below are some recent publications regarding FASD
from Aotearoa and around the globe.

1. The international charter on prevention
of fetal alcohol spectrum disorder The first
international conference on prevention of fetal
alcohol spectrum disorders was held in Edmonton,
AB, Canada, on Sept 23—25, 2013. The conference
resulted in the production, endorsement, and
adoption of the international charter. More than
700 people from 35 countries worldwide took part
in its development. It is presented to all
concerned in the international community as a
call for urgent action to prevent fetal alcohol
spectrum disorder.

2. The Chair of the Health Select Committee
of the New Zealand Parliament would like to
inform you that the Government response to the
Health Committee’s Inquiry into ‘Improving child
health outcomes and preventing child abuse with a
focus from preconception until three years of
age’, is to be announced on Thursday 6 March
(tomorrow). The report contained a section with
recommendations to address FASD including calling
for a national strategic plan and support for a
population-based prevalence study of school aged children.

3. FASD-CAN Inc has released its 2nd
newsletter which is available on
www.fasd-can.org.nz (click on News to download).
It contains a letter from the Human Right’s
Disability Commissioner, Paul Gibson supporting
FASD as a disability under the UN Convention and
endorsing the importance of supporting families living with FASD.

4. Alcohol Healthwatch has sent out a press
release on the topic of the UK Court of Appeal
case considering criminalising women who continue
to drink heavily during pregnancy against
advice. A copy can be viewed on www.fan.org.nz
and further details are included in item # 13 below.

5. A 2013 paper by New Zealand researcher
at Victoria University Jane Gunn, entitled
‘Meeting the needs of children with FASD through
research-based interventions’ can be viewed
online http://www.teacherswork.ac.nz/journal/volume10_issue1.php

6. First Peoples Child & Family Review (Vol
8, No 1 (2013) has dedicated this entire issue to
the topic of FASD and Indigenous
peoples http://journals.sfu.ca/fpcfr/index.php/FPCFR/issue/view/19

7. Break silence about FASD, make awareness
universal Deb Evensen of Homer has worked in
education about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) for 30
years. She’s still working for a wider awareness
of those cruel afflictions, which are 100 percent
preventable — but when not prevented, last for

8. Sydney Morning Herald article on FASD
and Crime Link. Before Jack ever had a drink,
alcohol permanently changed his brain. The
26-year-old’s mother drank while pregnant and
today Jack suffers from fetal alcohol spectrum
disorder (FASD). He is impatient, impulsive, with
a poor memory and a short attention

9. An Australian study has found more than
half of women who binge drink continue to do so
during pregnancy, , with fewer than one in five
following guidelines to abstain from
.. For the full research paper go to

10. Alcohol consumption during pregnancy and
birth outcomes: the Kyushu Okinawa Maternal and
Child Health Study. This is the first study in
Japan to show that maternal alcohol consumption
during pregnancy of 1.0 gram or more per day of
pure alcohol, (a standard drink in NZ is 10g) was
significantly positively associated with the risk
of preterm birth http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-2393/14/79

11. New research reinforces danger of drinking
alcohol while pregnant. Women who drink alcohol
at moderate or heavy levels in the early stages
of their pregnancy might damage the growth and
function of their placenta – the organ
responsible for supplying everything that a
developing infant needs until birth – research at
The University of Manchester shows. MedicalXpress

12. Introducing the Better Safe Than Sorry
project. Susan Rich is a psychiatrist, who heads
this campaign and says, “I have recently seen a
10th person with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
(FASD) awaiting a possible death sentence and
work with a forensic psychologist who has
evaluated approximately 60 of these individuals
over the past several years
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAbZFK1uqHA or check out www.susandrich.com

13. Drinking while pregnant might soon be a
crime in UK. Women who put their unborn babies at
risk by drinking to excess during pregnancy
should be prosecuted, say activists. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fj3S7JCUqJg