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Alcohol Price Warning

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3:16pm 2nd July 2014

There is warning from the man in charge of policing in Cornwall and Devon that we need to act now on cheap booze.

Tony Hogg is calling on the Prime Minister to speed up bringing in a minimum price.

He says we cannot afford to delay any longer as services come under increasing pressure: "It is now time to act. The Government has put plans to introduce a minimum unit price for alcohol on hold for too long.
"It must press on and not be deterred by industry interests.  Every day that the political parties delay, there are more hospital admissions and more arrests - affecting lives and using up valuable public resources.
"I am writing to the Prime Minister and the leaders of the Labour and Liberal Democrats seeking their commitment to the earliest possible introduction of meaningful legislation."
In Devon and Cornwall alone the estimated cost of alcohol fuelled crime and harm is a massive £366m. Tony Hogg says policing alcohol fuelled crime puts enormous pressure on police and healthcare resources and is simply not sustainable.
"More and more resources are being sucked up into policing alcohol fuelled crime and disorder, and we simply do not have the luxury of allowing this to continue."
Mr Hogg goes on to describe the Government's recent action to ban the sale of alcohol below cost as meaningless.
Government research shows that a minimum unit price of 45p per unit of alcohol could provide an immediate drop in crimes of over 5000 per year, saving £13m, with an estimated fall in hospital admissions of over 4,500 in year one.

 Sheffield University estimates a longer term reduction after 10 years of 34,000 less crimes and 24,000 less hospital admissions each year.  
"We simply cannot afford to delay." said Mr Hogg. "The introduction of minimum unit pricing is a necessity.  Greater action must be taken - through MUP, and by the adoption of tough and meaningful measures. We must protect our citizens and safeguard our public services for the future."

3:16pm 2nd July 2014

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