Amy Winehouse’s death from has sparked an alcohol warning from the Public Health minister Anne Milton.
The singer’s death from alcohol poisoning at only 27 years of age prompted Milton to argue that the UK still don’t take the risks of drinking seriously.
She told MPs that the message that alcohol causes harm still hasn’t got through to the public unlike the message that obesity and smoking causes harm.
“I still think that whereas people accept the harm that smoking causes, they accept the problems being overweight causes, there is still some issue about accepting the harm that alcohol causes.”
“I think that’s still a message that we haven’t got through in the guidelines.”
But she also acknowledged that even when people understand the risks of a certain activity, they still choose to do it.
“People do things that they know harm their health, so 22 per cent of people still smoke,” she said
“We do have to look at why it is that people feel the need to go and get very, very drunk and harm their health.”
Milton also said that the government’s policy of raising the duty on strong beer was having an affect on alcohol consumption.
“There is no doubt about it, price can manipulate the market, so increasing duty on high-strength alcohol is not a bad idea, because for every litre sold there is less alcohol in it, which is a move in the right direction.”
However she admitted the effect of price increases on problem drinkers was less clear cut.