Parliamentarians call on all political parties to commit to tackling alcohol harms

Monday 11 August 2014

In a manifesto released today, the All Parliamentary Party Group (APPG) on Alcohol Misuse is calling on political parties to effectively minimise alcohol related harm in the UK.

The Alcohol Misuse All Party Parliamentary Group, which exists to promote the discussion of alcohol-related issues, raise matters of concern and to make recommendations to government and other policy makers, is asking all political parties to commit to 10 measures.  

The 10 measures include calling for the strengthening of alcohol advertising regulations and a phased ban on alcohol sponsorship, an increase in funding for treatment and access levels for problem drinkers, and the introduction of minimum unit pricing. There are also calls to make the training of parental substance abuse mandatory for all social workers and healthcare professionals, and for national public awareness and behaviour change campaigns on alcohol to be independently funded.

Tracey Crouch MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Misuse, said: “Due to alcohol, one person is killed every hour and 1.2 million people are admitted to hospital a year.”

“Getting political parties to seriously commit to these 10 measures will be a massive step in tackling the huge public health issue that alcohol is.”

Lord Brooke of Alverthorpe, vice-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Misuse, said: “After smoking, alcohol is the second biggest preventable killer. Not only does it cost lives but burdens the NHS and the Criminal and Justice systems  and others with ever increasing costs.

“All the political parties know that but they run for cover when they are confronted by the drinks industry and its immensely powerful lobby.

“These proposals give them another chance to consider whether they really have the guts to take a different line for the country’s wellbeing in the future.”

Alcohol Concern provides the secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Misuse and welcomes the calls from the APPG.

Jackie Ballard, Chief Executive of Alcohol Concern, said: “Alcohol misuse costs Britain £21 billion a year. We need urgent action to tackle this and the significant harmful effects alcohol misuse causes to individuals. I hope all parties will read the manifesto and show a commitment to the vital measures which it highlights.”

Ends

For media enquiries please call Cara Barrett cbarrett@alcoholconcern.org.uk 0207 566 9803.

A spokesperson will be available on Monday 11 August.

Notes to Editors

To read the full manifesto, please click here.

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