Greenland settlement stops alcohol sales

High rates of alcohol consumption in one far northern settlement in Greenland have led the government to declare it dry, writes the Arctic Journal.

Few would disagree that alcohol consumption in Savissivik, a settlement in far northern Greenland, is at the high end of the scale. In the settlement store, empty shelves where the beer should be are a regular sight.

Public intoxication is one of the visible effects, as are property crimes such as theft and vandalism. Worst of all, child-neglect is said to spike whenever parents hit the drink too hard.

What the 70 or so residents of the settlement disagree on is whether punishing the entire settlement by banning all alcohol sales is a fair response. A majority believe it is: 21 of the 33 residents casting a ballot in a non-binding referendum in January voted in favour of a settlement-wide ban on beer sales.

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