Intended for healthcare professionals


Police commissioners call for rethink on minimum pricing of alcohol

BMJ 2014; 348 doi: (Published 20 January 2014) Cite this as: BMJ 2014;348:g300
  1. Adrian O’Dowd
  1. 1London

Three police commissioners have called on the UK government to rethink its policy on the minimum pricing of alcohol, after a recent BMJ investigation.

Leading figures in the police service claimed that evidence on the effects of a minimum price for a unit of alcohol had been suppressed and that the government had been unduly influenced by the drinks industry.

The Department of Health for England, however, has rejected any suggestions of improper meetings with drinks industry representatives.

In an open letter published on 14 January,1 Ron Hogg, Vera Baird, and Barry Coppinger—the police and crime commissioners for Durham, Northumberland, and Cleveland—discussed alcohol and its link to crime and disorder.

Their letter called on the government to think again about its decision in July last year to drop plans for minimum alcohol pricing in England and Wales.2

The commissioners said they were …

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