What is the Commission on Alcohol Harm?

The Alcohol Health Alliance UK (AHA) is supporting a Commission on Alcohol Harm, consisting of a panel of varied experts and chaired by Baroness Finlay of Llandaff.

The Commission on Alcohol Harm has been established to examine the current evidence on alcohol harm, recent trends in alcohol harm and the changes needed to reduce the harm caused by alcohol. The Commission will also examine the need for a new comprehensive alcohol strategy for England, which takes account of the strategies in place in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, and considers UK-wide priorities in areas where policy is not devolved. 

When will the Commission take place?

The Commission will hold three oral evidence sessions in early 2020 and has launched a call for written evidence, with submissions welcomed before the deadline of 12.00 noon on 17 February 2020.

How can I take part in the Commission?

We are keen to have input from academic researchers, charities, healthcare professionals, professional bodies, commissioners and those affected by alcohol harm in their personal, professional or family life.

The Commission on Alcohol Harm welcomes written submissions addressing one or more of the following questions:

  1. What evidence has emerged since 2012 on alcohol’s impact on:
    • Physical health?
    • Mental health?
  2. What impact does alcohol have on the NHS and other public services?
  3. What challenges do alcohol treatment services currently face in supporting people impacted by alcohol harm?
  4. What recent evidence is there of impacts caused by alcohol consumption on family life, relationships and sexual behaviour?
  5. What data exists to show alcohol’s current impact on different demographic groups, including age, sex and social class?
  6. What impact does alcohol have on economic productivity and is there evidence of this changing since 2012?
  7. What current evidence is there of links between alcohol and violent behaviour and other crime?
  8. What recent evidence is there of links between alcohol and other addictive behaviours (such as smoking, drug use and gambling)?
  9. What effect does the current approach to alcohol marketing and licensing have on alcohol harm?
  10. What policy changes would help to reduce the level of harm caused by alcohol? Are there policy responses from other governments (including within the UK) that have been successful in reducing harms caused by alcohol that could be implemented in the UK?


    Please note: There is no requirement to answer every question. Choose the question or questions you can answer best.

Submission guidelines

Please submit written evidence to [email protected]ahauk.org by 12.00 noon on 17 February 2020.

Submissions of written evidence should follow the guidelines below:

  • Be submitted as a single Microsoft Word document attached to an email
  • State clearly who the submission is from, and whether it is sent in a personal capacity or on behalf of an organisation
  • Be no more than 2,500 words in length
  • Provide references when citing evidence from other sources

Written evidence received by the Commission on Alcohol Harm will form the basis for the final report. Some written evidence will be directly quoted in the report. Please explicitly state if any of the submission provided should not be directly quoted.