Local survey data also show notable variation in drinking behaviour across different ethnic groups, as illustrated in Figure 10. In the Hackney resident health and wellbeing survey, high risk drinkers were most likely to be from White backgrounds, while non-drinking was particularly common among Asian and Black respondents compared to White respondents, which may reflect religious or cultural practices (as described in the Causes and risk factors section). Data are not available for more detailed analysis within each of these broad ethnic groups.

White people are significantly less likely to be a non-drinker than black or asian people. People of black or asian ethnicity are also less likely to be high risk drinkers.
Figure 10: Reported drinking behaviour of Hackney adult residents based on AUDIT-C score, by broad ethnic group (age 16+, 2015)

Source: Hackney resident health and wellbeing survey (2015)

Notes: Based on a sub-sample size of 960

These patterns are also observed in perceptions of drinking behaviour, with residents from White backgrounds more likely than those from Black and Asian backgrounds to report that they drink over perceived safe limits (Table 7).

Correspondingly, national evidence shows that, in terms of drinking patterns by ethnic group for those who are underage, young people from White ethnic backgrounds are more likely to drink than those in other ethnic groups. 1


Table 7: Perceptions of drinking behaviour among Hackney adult residents, by broad ethnic group (age 16+, 2015)
Self-reported drinking behaviour White Black Asian Mixed
Non-drinker 26% 47% 78% 35%
Drink within perceived safe limits 53% 47% 19% 54%
Drink over perceived safe limits 22% 5% 1% 10%

Source: Hackney resident health and wellbeing survey (2015)


  1. Public Health England, “Alcohol consumption and harm among under 18 year olds,” 2016. [Online]. Available: https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/542889/Alcohol_consumption_and_harms_in_under_18s.pdf. [Accessed 15 August 2016].