On 2 February 2022, the Government released the Levelling Up White Paper which sets out the Government’s plans to improve lives and expand opportunities across the whole United Kingdom.

In response, Dr Alison Giles, Chief Executive of IAS and Chair of the Communications and Advocacy Group for the Alcohol Health Alliance UK, said:

“The Government plans to level up the country include reducing crime, improving well-being and raising life expectancy. None of this can be done without tackling alcohol harm.

“Alcohol is a significant driver of inequality – hitting the poorest hardest. People from the most deprived communities in England are 60% more likely to die because of alcohol than those in richer communities and those from lower socioeconomic groups are more likely to experience alcohol-related violence. Despite this, the Levelling Up White Paper makes no reference to any plans to reduce alcohol harm in the general population.

“With deaths linked to alcohol at record highs, failure to address the alcohol harm crisis in the Levelling Up White Paper is a grave mistake. The Government must not miss this opportunity to tackle the crisis and save lives.”