Your views could help shape the way alcohol-related problems are dealt with in the future.
The East Sussex Safer Communities Partnership is kicking off the East Sussex Drink Debate to find out how alcohol features in the lives of individuals, families and communities in the county. The partnership includes East Sussex County Council, Sussex Police, district and borough councils and other partners who want to hear people’s views on alcohol and what they would like to see to help deal with alcohol related problems.
Feedback from the consultation, which began on Monday 8 April, will be used by the East Sussex Drug and Alcohol Action Team in drafting the East Sussex Alcohol Harm Reduction Strategy.
While the majority of adults who drink, do so responsibly, there are a significant number of people who end up in hospital because of alcohol misuse and some local communities which suffer alcohol related anti-social behaviour and crime. Drinking over the recommended number of units increases the risk of cancer and heart disease.
Dr Diana Grice, East Sussex Director of Public Health, said: “It is really important that people let us know what they think about drinking in East Sussex – the problems, the good things and any suggestions to prevent the damage caused by drink. That’s why we are holding a drink debate. So whatever experience people have of alcohol, we want to hear from you.
“All the information we get from you will help us to put together a strategy to support people in reducing the harm caused by alcohol and enjoying the benefits. Sensible drinking policies will mean that, in the end, everyone has a better quality of life in East Sussex.”
The strategy is planned for publication in the autumn and will set out the work needed to help people make more informed choices about drinking alcohol and the steps needed to tackle alcohol related problems in our neighbourhoods.
Anyone who lives or works in East Sussex is invited to join the debate, but particularly people under the age of 18, under the age of 25, parents of youngsters and those living in areas affected by alcohol-related problems.
To take part in the East Sussex Drink Debate, you can complete an online survey, print off a paper survey, join a focus group or attend a walk-up event:
The consultation ends on Friday 14 June and there will be an opportunity for public comment on the draft strategy when it is published.
For more information about the East Sussex Drink Debate contact Anita McGrath in the Safer Communities Team, on 01323 464 088 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.