Alcohol and crime: Bad combination

Editorial

WE report almost daily on crimes that involve behaviour influenced by alcohol consumption. Yesterday’s newspaper, for example, included reports of a traffic accident in which the driver was fined for various traffic offences, including driving under the influence of alcohol.
Reports from the criminal justice system of arrests for alcohol-fueled domestic violence and driving while intoxicated are routine.
This brings us to the issue of the sale of alcohol in public places.
Policies regulating the availability of alcohol are a key pillar of an evidence-based approach to reducing the health and social burdens of alcohol consumption on the population.
One key area of concern is the availability of alcohol in a temporal sense, as measured by the allowable hours of trading for alcohol outlets (particularly late at night).
Alcohol availability is a key driver of alcohol-related harm.
Authorities need to step up and take action on outlets that continue to abuse their trading hours. Most trading happen in full view of the public.
We understand the police are busy, but surely they are in a position to know if bars are open past 12am and to take appropriate action.
Perhaps they would eliminate some of their other alcohol-related calls.
The sale and consumption of alcohol is not against the law nor should it be.
But the law does regulate alcohol sales in the interest of community safety.
Many people drink alcohol and the majority do so without any problems.
Drinking can be enjoyable and sometimes helps you to unwind or relax.
But heavy drinking, getting drunk or drinking at the wrong time or in the wrong situation, can lead to a range of difficulties.
Many people know about the sensible drinking limits, yet many drink over these limits.
Alcohol abuse is a contentious issue that poses many challenges for our society. Alcohol abuse can be seen as the basis of bigger problems such as domestic violence, family conflicts and marriage breakups. The truth is that drinking alcohol is never going to be risk-free, but regularly going over the sensible drinking guidelines can have a negative effect on your overall health.
Every drink one consumes adds up, and over time it can have a bigger impact on health and wellbeing.
Even if one doesn’t have a hangover, the alcohol they’ve drunk still has an impact on their system.
Banning production and consumption of alcohol may not be possible. The sensible thing, therefore, might be to really commit ourselves to controlling it.
There is an urgent need to address alcohol consumption and related issues in the country.
While businesses want to make money and city authorities need the goods and services tax to manage the city, there is a serious need to look at the cost of alcohol to the community at large.
Legislative limits on trading hours for licensed premises should be the key policy approach to managing alcohol-related problems.
The sale of alcohol in the community through black markets needs to be discouraged by the policymakers as this is the quickest avenue through which young people get used to consuming alcohol.
Black Markets are not only affordable, they are available everywhere and at any time.
Strict laws on the sale and consumption of alcohol need to be reinforced in the country to curtail abuse.

Leave a Reply