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alcohol health alliance uk

Balance response to the Home Office consultation

Posted 28/07/10

Dave Hogg, crime and disorder programmes manager at Balance, the North East alcohol office, said: “We welcome the Government's decision to consult the country on the way alcohol is priced and sold and will be calling upon the North East to let its voice be heard to help rid the region of the problems caused by alcohol misuse.

“Alcohol misuse is having a devastating effect on many of our communities and families and the lives of professional frontline staff in the North East.

“While we welcome measures that address the problems caused by cheap alcohol, simply banning below cost sales will not reduce consumption amongst heavy and young drinkers. Increasing tax or duty would penalise both moderate drinkers and community pubs. Introducing a minimum price would be fairer, more targeted and easier to implement.

“Alcohol is too available in too many places at too many hours of the day. Local communities need the powers to turn back the tide. We welcome the Government's intention to change the licensing laws to give more control back to local communities and take action against bad licensees without affecting the livelihood of those landlords who play a critical role in our communities.

“At the end of the day, we want communities where alcohol plays a role in bringing people together, not isolating them and creating problems for the frontline staff in our public services.”