England’s liberal alcohol policies may be coming home to roost. Alcohol-related hospital admissions have skyrocketed, according to documents obtained by the Observer, two years after England relaxed alcohol policies and allowed booze to be sold 24 hours. The figures, which trace admissions ranging from drunken driving to liver problems, have risen 27.3% for men and 28.9% for women since 2002.
“These data show that we have a serious alcohol problem in this country and measures to date haven't had any discernible effect,” said one physician, advocating an increase in alcohol prices. Police officers, always skeptical of relaxed laws, reported more alcohol incidents. “It used to be…the hot spots would be on Fridays and Saturdays,” said one. “Now it’s any night of the week.”