Thursday, 28 December 2006
Time children please?
Local authority tests carried out by the Liberal Democrats found 23% of pubs, bars and off-licences in England and Wales are selling alcohol to underage drinkers.
Between 2004 and 2005 there were 11,452 tests in which under-age people were sent into pubs, bars and off-licences to make purchases. Of those 11,452 tests, 2,588 resulted in purchases by the under 18s.
Liberal Democrat local government spokesman Andrew Stunell the Liberal Democrat local government spokesman said: "It is shocking that under-age children can so easily buy alcohol. "As well as being illegal, it is grossly irresponsible for pubs and shops to sell alcohol to under-age young people. "Teenagers drinking illegally bought alcohol often take part in anti-social behaviour, causing misery for many people in their community."
There were 7,500 under 18s treated for conditions like alcohol poisoning in 2004-5, a rise of 20% compared to the period 1999-2000.
The underage drink problem is increased by minors getting over 18s to buy alcohol for them. The purchasers of the alcohol tend to be only 18 or 19, supplying the drink to gain esteem amongst a younger group.
Q. Should the age limit for purchasing alcohol in shops and off-licences be increased to 21?
To see the results go to: