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Darlington, Stockton and Redcar and Cleveland get behind its frontline

Posted 24/08/10

Almost 2,000 north easterners have backed the region’s frontline staff by telling Government they’ve had enough of the problems caused by alcohol misuse.

Balance, the North East Alcohol Office, visited Stockton, Darlington and Redcar and Cleveland as part of its ‘I have a drink problem’ campaign which highlights the problems caused by cheap alcohol faced by nurses, police officers, firefighters and paramedics on a regular basis.

As part of a two-week tour of the region’s towns and cities, residents were encouraged to support the Government’s intention to tackle the sale of drink at pocket money prices by completing a post card setting out their views on alcohol price and legislation.

Dave Hogg, Crime and Disorder Programmes Manager at Balance, said: “The response we’ve had so far has been great but there is still a long way to go and we need as many people as possible to have their say and help rid the region of the problems caused by alcohol misuse.”

Police officers, nurses, paramedics and firefighters across the region have backed the campaign, which was launched on August 9. They have been joined by landlords, bar staff, taxi drivers and others in professions who experience the darker side of drink.

Dave added: “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.

“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.”

To support out frontline staff log onto www.balancenortheast.co.uk where you can support the ‘I have a drink problem’ campaign and register your opinions on the Government consultation, which closes on September 8.