Have your say: Enough already

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Agnes Hermans says treatment opportunities for heavy drinkers should be increased. Photo / Thinkstock
Agnes Hermans says treatment opportunities for heavy drinkers should be increased. Photo / Thinkstock

I wish to express my strong opposition to Onerahi having yet another alcohol outlet.

This is not a positive move for our community.

I am saying this as a health professional, and as current chairperson of Onerahi Resource Centre Trust, which employs Ligi Pakieto-Johnstone, local community worker, and as a resident of Onerahi for the past 26 years.

As a health professional, I am aware of the negative impact of increasing the availability of alcohol - and both Manaia and Te Tai Tokerau PHOs support tight controls on alcohol sales because this is part of a wider policy direction titled the 5+ Solution.

The 5+ Solution advocates:
1.Raise alcohol prices.
2.Raise the purchase age.
3.Reduce alcohol accessibility.
4.Reduce marketing and advertising.
5.Increase drink-driving counter-measures.
Plus: Increase treatment opportunities for heavy drinkers.

The 5+ Solution is a set of policy directives based on the World Health Organisation-sponsored publication, Alcohol: No Ordinary Commodity written by 15 of the top alcohol and public health scientists in the world (Babor et al 2003).

Anyone who has a heart for the well-being of their community would not support this proposal. It serves a narrow business interest, and nothing else.

Nga mihi.

Agnes Hermans
Project co-ordinator - alcohol
Northland Primary Health Organisations

- Northern Advocate

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