Minimum alcohol unit pricing a failed Labour policy
Alcohol-related issues cost the NHS around £159m each year. Minimum unit alcohol pricing was introduced to save the taxpayer money and protect the general public from alcohol abuse, with the Welsh NHS expecting to see 1,281 fewer alcohol-related hospital admissions and 66 fewer deaths per year. However, Welsh Conservative research has revealed that there have been more alcohol-related deaths since the policy was introduced in 2019.
Commenting on the research, Welsh Conservative Shadow Minister for Health, Russell George MS said:
“The latest data about the effects of minimum unit alcohol pricing back up claims that this failed Labour policy hasn’t worked. The purpose of minimum alcohol unit pricing was to save the taxpayer money but most importantly protect the general public from alcohol-related abuse. Sadly, the number of people dying from alcohol-related deaths has increased each year since the policy was introduced.
“When this Bill was initially considered by the Senedd, Welsh Conservatives stressed the importance of putting in safeguards such as stronger monitoring and data collection methods to ensure it did not push alcoholics towards more harmful, cheaper substances or penalised those on low incomes.
“The increasing number of stories about the negative effects of minimum unit alcohol pricing proves that Labour was wrong to ignore the laws of unintended consequences when they passed this law in Wales. In light of this, we must now see a review into minimum alcohol unit pricing brought forward.”