Alcohol Price Increase Ignores the Real Issue

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The rise in minimum unit prices for Alcohol has been welcomed today – by supermarkets.

That’s because it is likely to have zero impact on consumption while it has been revealed Supermarkets will reap the benefits of extra profits from sales.

The problem with this latest scheme is that it ignores the real issues of why people are drinking in the first place. For example:

  • We still have aggressive advertising from Alcohol manufacturers targeting Young People.
  • We still have soaps such as Emmerdale and Coronation Street showing people drinking in the pub 7 days a week, portraying cultural norm that doesn’t exist.
  • We still thrive on the media myth that ALL teenagers are drinking when our data tells us that 83% of Young People rarely or never drinks (sample 18806 year 9s throughout UK).
  • We have evidence telling us that for the Teenagers who are drinking, more than two thirds (68%) are getting alcohol from parents – in most cases consensually.

(And yes, the data we have is consistent from the most vulnerable to the most affluent)

So rather than throwing sandbags around buildings already flooded – we are urging the government to start focussing more efforts on early Intervention and prevention.

We are urging them to understand that the most effective way to engage with audiences on health is to promote a positive/alternative message – like the one below which reduced drinking rates in Swindon.

We are urging them to stop the spreading of negativity – perpetuating the myth that everyone is doing it and therefore compounding the problem.

It’s time to change attitudes – not prices.

We have the proof that changing attitudes and perceptions can positively change behaviours.

To find out how we’re doing this with Young People all over the UK, visit our website www.rudifferent.co.ukor www.social-sense.co.uk

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