Skip to main content

Posts

Showing posts from March, 2014

How local uprisings can loosen the grip of the super-strength beast

Sitting in my in-box is a report on deaths among our hostel residents during 2013. I busy myself with other e-mails, mentally preparing myself before opening it. And because I know what it will contain, I focus my mind on a couple of colleagues, Dave and Dennis, both of whom were once street drinkers knocking back death defying quantities of alcohol and are now, having tackled their addiction, skilled hostel workers. 

Eventually I resolve to click open the report. It includes the following grim statistics. There have been thirteen deaths, ten alcohol-related. In all but one case the specific type of alcohol that caused this carnage was lager and cider of above 7.5% alcohol by volume (abv); the super-strengths. 


It’s a sickening, upsetting report. ‘Sarah’s lower intestine ceased working because of alcohol misuse, causing system failure’. ‘Rick was admitted into the intensive care unit but suffered massive organ failure due to long-term alcohol-related health problems’. ‘Alan died from oe…