Momentum for change: research and advocacy reducing alcohol harm
7-9 October 2015, EICC Edinburgh
Welcome from Alcohol Focus Scotland
I would like to extend a warm invitation to you to join us in Edinburgh, Scotland, for the 2015 Global Alcohol Policy Conference (GAPC).
Across the world, alcohol causes so much damage to people’s health, to the lives of their families, and to the communities we live in. Harmful use of alcohol causes around 3.3 million deaths every year (5.9% of all deaths) and 5.1% of the global disease burden.
Scotland has been working hard to reduce the significant harm that alcohol causes in our country. The Scottish Government’s plans to introduce minimum unit pricing for alcohol will increase the price of the cheapest, strongest drinks. Unfortunately, the implementation of this innovative policy has been delayed due to a legal challenge from the alcohol industry. This action provides yet more evidence of the alcohol industry’s role in seeking to prevent the implementation of alcohol policies that are going to be effective in reducing alcohol consumption and harm.
Against this backdrop of high levels of alcohol harm around the world and increasing efforts by global corporate interests to undermine effective alcohol policies, GAPC offers a unique opportunity for researchers, NGOs, policymakers, and health professionals to come together to share knowledge and inspire each other to advocate for the policies that will work to reduce the significant harm that alcohol causes in our countries.
Alcohol Focus Scotland’s mission is to play a leading role in creating a world where alcohol is no longer a major cause of harm. I hope that GAPC 2015 can be the catalyst for local, national and global action to make this a reality.
Dr Mac Armstrong CB, Chair, Alcohol Focus Scotland