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Mixed signs on district drink habits
The latest report into how alcohol is being used and abused in the Bradford district makes for a mixed bag of reading.
There does appear to be some good news in the report – Bradford is ranked 18th out of 326 for having the highest number of those who abstain completely from alcohol, for example.
And perhaps more impressively, deaths attributable to alcohol among men have shown a marked decline from almost 60 per 100,000 of population to 34.
This is obviously a testament to the hard work being carried out by the agencies including Bradford Council and NHS Airedale, Bradford and Leeds to educate people about the dangers of alcohol.
More worrying, perhaps, is that alcohol-specific deaths – those where alcohol has played a direct part in the death rather than as a contributing factor – are up among women by more than 11 per cent.
While much good work is indeed being done, there is still a long way to go before everyone who is at risk from alcohol-related illnesses and incidents gets the message.
Some 92,000 people are said to drink “at hazardous levels” in the district – a huge proportion of the population.
There has never been as much help, support and guidance from the authorities on just what are safe levels of alcohol intake, and what can be done if things are getting to crisis point.
Of course, those at most risk of harm are often the last ones to see it, so it falls to all of us to remain vigilant around our friends and loved ones and gently urge them to take advantage of the excellent support network that is available if they need to.