Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Ministers Are Urged to Get Behind Drink Price Move

Newspaper article The Journal (Newcastle, England)

Ministers Are Urged to Get Behind Drink Price Move

Article excerpt

MINISTERS will be urged to back Newcastle Council's efforts to introduce a minimum price for alcohol across the North East.

Councillors met to discuss the lobbying approach last night amid mounting evidence of the region's drink record.

Newcastle councillors backed a motion which will see them work with other councils to look at the feasibility of forcing supermarkets to set a minimum price on drinks.

Health groups say much of the city centre's drink problem is down to people loading up on cheap supermarket drink offers before heading out.

Liberal Democrat Wendy Taylor, who proposed the motion, told a Newcastle Council meeting that sitting back and waiting for the Government to act was not an option.

The hospital consultant added: "If we look at the NHS we can see some pounds 1.7bn is spent annually on alcohol related admissions, so it is clearly unfair that taxpayers are having to pay for this."

She was backed by the Labour group, which pushed through an amended motion looking for a wider package of measures tackling "affordability, availability and promotion of alcohol. …

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