PM may follow Scottish lead on alcohol pricing
THE UK government edged closer to following Scotland’s example of minimum pricing for alcohol yesterday when David Cameron spoke of the destruction caused by drink.
The Prime Minister pledged to tackle the growing “scandal” of alcohol-fuelled disorder when he met doctors, nurses, paramedics and police at the Royal Victoria Infirmary in Newcastle to highlight the cost of alcohol to the NHS.
Mr Cameron said: “The facts are pretty stark. Alcohol costs the NHS almost £3 billion a year; a cost of £90 to every taxpayer.
“This has a huge impact on the NHS and a huge impact on accident and emergency, which every Thursday, Friday and Saturday night is overrun by people who are drunk and incapable. We need to do more to tackle this problem.
“We are going to look at the issue of alcohol pricing. I’m quite convinced there is deep discounting of alcohol in supermarkets and convenience stores and that it is causing part of the problem.
“We need to take action right across the board. I want to make sure local councils have the power to close down bars that are causing a problem and that police can step in if they need to because it is against the law to sell to people who are drunk or underage.
“We also need to look at the issue of pricing. This is a national problem.”
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Saturday 25 May 2013
Temperature: 6 C to 17 C
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