Tackling Scotland's Alcohol Problem
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New SHAAP Report - Alcohol Policy in Scotland and Ireland

A new report from SHAAP, Alcohol Policy in Scotland and Ireland: European Trailblazers or Celtic Fringes?, compares alcohol-related problems and welcomes innovative policy responses in Ireland and Scotland, also recognising the need to work at a pan-European level.

SHAAP/SARN 'Alcohol Occasional' seminars 2016/17

Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems (SHAAP) and the Scottish Alcohol Research Network (SARN) are pleased to announce our programme for the lunchtime ‘Alcohol Occasional’ seminars. These showcase innovative research on alcohol use and provide the chance for researchers, practitioners and policy makers and members of the public to hear and discuss alcohol related topics. The theme for this seminar series, from November 2017, is ‘Alcohol and Social Justice’.

The 2017-2018 seminars will take place from 12.30–14.00 on the following dates (all Mondays):
6th November 2017 • 4th December 2017 • 29th January 2018 • 12th March 2018 • 23rd April 2018.

We are now seeking to deliver presentations and are interested to hear from researchers from any discipline who wish to share their findings with an audience made up of fellow researchers, practitioners, policy makers and the general public. We would particularly welcome presentations from new and early career researchers. If you are interested in presenting your research, please get in touch with Felicity Garvie at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with a short proposal (max. 300 words) and indication of your availability. Closing date for submissions is Monday 28th August 2017.

SHAAP response to Appendix 3 of WHO Global NCD Action Plan consultation

SHAAP has submitted a response to the World Health Organisation's (WHO) consultation on (draft) Appendix 3 of their Global NCD Action Plan.

In our response, we broadly support the overarching actions and specific interventions outlined in the document. We call for inclusion of minimum pricing in the document, as an effective, evidence-based (pricing) policy for reducing alcohol related harm; greater and more explicit reference to alcohol marketing and exposure to children, especially in relation to social media; improved mandatory product labelling; and greater recognition of the links between alcohol and cancer risk.

SHAAP response to House of Lords Select Committee Consultation on Licensing Act 2003

SHAAP has submitted a response to the House of Lords Select Committee Select Committee on the Licensing Act 2003 Consultation.

In our response we support the four current existing licensing objectives and call for the protection of public health to be added as a fifth licensing objective to the Act (as in Scotland); greater community involvement in licensing decisions; and the introduction of a minimum unit price for alcohol, to complement licensing, as an effective mechanism for controlling availability and reducing alcohol-related harm.

SHAAP response to NHS Scotland document proforma consultation

SHAAP has submitted a response to NHS Scotland's proforma consultation on the following documents:

In our response, we comment on the above draft documents. We welcome the draft documents and make suggestions to further strengthen them, including a recommendation for stronger emphasis on joined-up services and greater recognition of understanding the links between alcohol and offending.

Call for proposals to present at 2016/17 SHAAP/SARN 'Alcohol Occasional' Seminars

Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems (SHAAP) and the Scottish Alcohol Research Network (SARN) are pleased to announce our programme for the lunchtime 'Alcohol Occasional' seminars. These showcase innovative research on alcohol use and provide the chance for researchers, practitioners and policy makers and members of the public to hear and discuss alcohol related topics, over lunch in the historic Royal College of Physicians in Queen Street, Edinburgh.

The theme for the forthcoming seminar series, from October 2016, is ‘Alcohol and Health Inequalities’. We’re particularly interested in presentations which provide insights and can stimulate discussion about alcohol and health inequalities in different contexts, drawing on a range of disciplines and opening up debate about implications for policy and practice.

Following the seminars, SHAAP will produce briefing papers, which will aim to capture the main themes and to communicate these to a wider audience. You can access reports from previous seminars here.

The 2016-2017 seminars will take place from 12.30–14.00 on the following dates:
13th October 2016 • 6th December 2016 • 24th January 2017 • 13th March 2017 • 11th May 2017 • 14th June 2017. If you are interested in presenting your work, please email Eric Carlin, SHAAP Director, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by 22nd August 2016 with a proposal of no more than 300 words.

SHAAP response to SG Police Powers to Search Children and Young People for Alcohol consultation

SHAAP has submitted a response to the Scottish Government's consultation on Police Powers to Search Children and Young People for Alcohol,

On this occasion, we have chosen not to support the proposals outlined in the consultation. Our response expresses concern about the effectiveness of the approach for the prevention of underage drinking and raises concerns about further stigmatisation of children and young people. Instead, we call for a broader approach to tackle the price, avaialbilty and marketing of alcohol.

New research supporting MUP

As the MUP court case continues in Scotland this week (7th and 8th July), new research by Dr Arianna Andreangeli from University of Edinburgh Law School emphasises both the moral and legal validity of MUP as a public health measure. The research draws on the experience of a number of Canadian provinces and shows that minimum unit pricing may well be the most effective tool to address the health-related and social ills arising from alcohol consumption.

A press release issued to accompany the research can be found here.

Public Health must prevail over Big Business - Open letter in support of MUP

Scottish Health Action on Alcohol Problems (SHAAP), Alcohol Focus Scotland (AFS), the British Medical Association (BMA), and Scottish Families Affected by Alcohol and Drugs (SFAD), along with other a range of other public health and charity leaders have signed an open letter in support of minimum unit pricing, ahead of the continuation of the court case in Edinburgh this week.

The letter reaffirms the necessity for public health to prevail over the interests of big business and the effectiveness of MUP as a measure to reduce access to and harms caused by cheap high strength alcohol in Scotland.

Minimum pricing will bring Scotland many benefits – it will help to reduce health inequalities, it will cut alcohol-related hospital admissions and crime and it will save hundreds of lives. We hope that this week the health of the people of Scotland will come before the profits of big business.

 

Support MUP. Sign our declaration.

 

#MUPsaveslives.

Scholin Alcohol Occasional online

Lisa Scholin, Research Assistant at the Institute for Social Marketing, University of Stirling and PhD student at Liverpool John Moores University spoke at SHAAP/SARN's 2015/16 Alcohol Occasional seminar series about alcohol in pregnancy. In her presentation, Scholin outlined the main themes around alcohol in pregnancy and the  associated risks of consuming alcohol during pregnancy. She then outlined findings from her PhD research which examined advice about alcohol given to women, parents and midwives in England and Sweden. There were significant differences between the two countries with pregnant women in England more likely to consume alcohol during pregnancy and believe this was okay. Scholin concluded that risk is culturally framed and this influences the advice given to women in both countries and how it is perceived - a summary of her presentation's key points can be found here.

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