Iceland: Un­fair for those with an al­co­hol prob­lem

Neu­rol­o­gist and CEO of De­CODE Ge­net­ics, Kári Ste­fáns­son writes an op­nion piece in Morgun­blaðið to­day where he crit­i­cises the par­lia­men­tary bill on the re­tail sale of al­co­hol in Ice­land. He says that al­co­hol in shops would be too tempt­ing for those with an al­co­hol prob­lem.

He says that the aim of the al­chol bill seems to lessen the trou­ble peoople go to when they want to pur­chase al­co­hol but that it would in­crease the prob­lem of those peo­ple who don’t want to buy al­co­hol but will find it dif­fi­cult to re­sist once its in their su­per­mar­ket.

“Al­co­hol is an ad­dic­tive drug and I’m sure that the movers of the bill re­alise al­though they pre­tend not to,” writes Ste­fáns­son. He points out that 15 % of Ice­landers have sought help for al­co­holism and adds that those peo­ple fit into a very nar­row de­f­i­n­i­tion of al­cholism. There are 48,000 Ice­landers to­day who would be tempted by hav­ing al­co­hol avail­able in su­per­mar­kets.


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