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More controls on alcohol needed to curb violence

20 Nov 2006

More controls on alcohol needed to curb violence

Manukau Mayor Sir Barry Curtis says the latest alcohol-related death in Counties Manukau once again confirms the need for tighter controls on alcohol sales to minors and drinking in public places.

A 33 year old man died after an incident in a park in Mangere. Two teenagers have been charged with murder.

Sir Barry says he is deeply shocked by the number of homicides in Manukau over the past year. Alcohol has been one of the common factors in the violent deaths of 16 people.

“We must stop the drinking culture that has become the norm for so many social groups, particularly teenage males. The community has had enough of drunken and aggressive hoons taking over public places such as beaches, parks and town centres. Stupid and impulsive behaviour is much likely from someone who is drunk, and violence is just a heartbeat away.

“The current ALAC campaign to curb drunken behaviour has my total support and I hope it does change attitudes and makes drunkenness socially unacceptable. I would like to see a complete turnaround in New Zealand’s attitude to alcohol.

“It’s as important as changing attitudes to drunk driving or domestic abuse, which are now considered unacceptable and attract strong penalties.

“The damage bill from drunkenness and alcohol abuse is huge. Some years ago, one economic analysis found it cost the country $14 billion per year. That figure will be even higher now.”

Sir Barry is not currently commenting on the death of a Botany Downs resident during an apparent home invasion over the weekend, as the matter is sub judice.


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