Monday, 11 August 2014

Party Party Party

The All Party Group on Alcohol Misuse want us to stop drinking as much as we do.

I think that's OK as a goal, but let's look at how they want to do this.

A phased ban on alcohol sponsorship - Well this worked for cigarettes, so introducing it on alcohol seems reasonable.

An increase in funding for treatment and access levels for problem drinkers - Helping people who are addicted has to be a good thing and the Government has invested millions in strategies to help those addicted to nicotine.

Make the training of parental substance abuse mandatory for all social workers and healthcare professionals - I'm surprised it isn't already.

Launching national public awareness and behaviour change campaigns - These are likely to be the type of thing we've seen on cigarette packaging and the national anti-smoking advertising.  The only issue I have with this is that I like the look of many alcohol products.  I think that bottles and their labels are an art form but don't think this is a good enough reason to prevent this proposal from being adopted.

The introduction of minimum unit pricing - Increasing the price of alcohol will reduce demand but I'm not sure that a minimum unit price is the answer.  I don't see why consumers should line the pockets of retailers.  I'd much rather see any increase in revenue given to the taxman.  This means I think we should have a tax for every unit of alcohol.  I think this should work, and perhaps increase the coffers of Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.

If you also think this is a good idea, have a think about how much the tax per unit of alcohol should be.  I have an idea, do you?

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