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Vera Baird calls for alcohol licensing law changes across UK

30th June 2017

Vera Baird calls for alcohol licensing law changes across UK

Northumbria Police and Crime Commissioner Vera Baird is once again calling on the Government to deliver an increase in the minimum price of alcohol across ALL of the UK.

The Commissioner’s comments follow this week’s news that the Welsh Government proposes to introduce a new law setting a minimum price for alcohol in Wales.

The rise in alcohol consumption and alcohol related harms in the UK in recent decades has gone hand in hand with increasing affordability of alcoholic drinks.

Under the plans for Wales, the cost of alcohol would be determined by a formula based on its strength and volume. Plans to regulate the price of alcohol in Wales were first introduced in July 2015 but were put on hold because of the assembly election in 2016 and a delay in the implementation of alcohol pricing legislation in Scotland due to legal challenges – a Supreme Court hearing is set to take place this Summer.

Dame Vera Baird has campaigned over a number of years for an increase in the minimum price of alcohol throughout the UK. She is urging the Government to allow England to follow in the footsteps proposed by Scotland and now Wales.

She said: “Price matters. Wales and Scotland are making the right moves and we need our Government to follow suit. We’ve played the waiting game for far too long now, and for no reason. The Government needs to do the right thing.

“We need to see an end of cheap alcohol sales of high-strength drink, mainly targeted at young people. There is firm evidence that an increase in the minimum alcohol price can improve public health and safety as well as reducing crime and it’s time for a change.”