Alcohol Awareness Week

Help with reducing problem drinking over festive period

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Next week is Alcohol Awareness Week, and Wandsworth's Public Health team is planning a programme of events to help people manage their alcohol intake over Christmas.

Teams of advisors will be running early evening stands in Putney and Clapham Junction town centres to give advice on how to drink sensibly over the festive period.

They will hand out special Christmas cards with key messages on them, including the importance of drinking water in between rounds of drinks, and tips on staying safe.

The advisors will be encouraging people to sign up to the Dry January campaign, in which people pledge to give up alcohol completely for a whole month in the New Year.

Public Health and the council's licensing team are also working with GPs, pharmacists, off-licenses and publicans, asking them to display posters promoting sensible drinking. Publicans will be encouraged not to sell alcohol to drunk people and will be reminded of their legal duty to provide free drinking water on request.

Wandsworth has pledged to tackle problem drinking and its effects on families and neighbourhoods. Earlier this year it set up the Wandsworth Alcohol Alliance with partners in the NHS and local community, and is drawing up an alcohol strategy.

Alcohol free zones have been set up in Tooting, Putney and Roehampton to reduce problems for local businesses and residents caused by street drinking. Outreach officers visit these areas to advise and help problem drinkers get treatment and support.  

Joint chairman of the Wandsworth Alcohol Alliance and Wandsworth Council’s health spokesman Cllr Jim Maddan said: "We know people like to celebrate with a Christmas drink, but for some alcohol can become a serious problem. It can destroy their physical and mental health and have a devastating effect on their family.

“Through this Christmas campaign and the ongoing work of the Alcohol Alliance we want to help people overcome addiction to alcohol and work with communities and alcohol retailers to make our neighbourhoods even safer. We hope local people will rise to the challenge with us and sign up to Dry January.”

The information stalls will be at the following locations:

  • Northcote Road, November 28, 4pm-8.30pm
  • Outside Clapham Junction station, December 15, 4pm-8.30pm.
  • St Mary's Church Square, Putney, December 16, 4pm-8.30pm

For information about alcohol support services, visit the Adult Care Information Service.

Sign up for Dry January.

November 15, 2013