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Mexico Salud-Hable Coalition launches first Civil Society Report on Harmful Use of Alcohol

16th March 2020

The Mexico Salud-Hable Coalition (the national NCD alliance in Mexico) has launched its first Civil Society Report on Harmful Use of Alcohol. This report is the first on the topic in Mexico and Latin America, representing an important example and guide to assess the status of alcohol control policies. 

Dr Zabicky, National Commissioner on Addictions highlighted that this report offers a series of policy recommendations for the Mexican authorities to advance on alcohol control, at a press conference held on Friday 13 March. He emphasised that the Mexican government is committed to avoiding the undue influence of the alcohol industry and has cancelled previous agreements with them to jointly sponsor or support public events. 

‘Just as with the tobacco industry, the alcohol industry will never be able to align their interests to those of public health.’ - Dr Gady Zabicky, National Commissioner on Addictions, Mexico. 

The report is strutured around the five pillars of recommended alcohol control policies included in WHO-led initiative SAFER - for a world free from alcohol related harms

S – Strengthen restrictions on alcohol availability

A – Advance and enforce drink driving counter-measures

F – Facilitate access to screening, brief interventions and treatment

E – Enforce bans or comprehensive restrictions on alcohol advertising, sponsorship, and promotion

R – Raise prices on alcohol through excise taxes and pricing policies

The analysis of alcohol control policies emphasises that the country is off-track in meeting the recommendations of the WHO’s Global Strategy on Harmful Use of Alcohol.

‘This report is an important effort that helps bridge the accountability gap in the national and regional NCD response.’, said Luis Manuel Encarnación, NCDA Senior Capacity Development Officer, speaking at the press conference.  

The report also highlights the importance of policies and regulations focused on availability, advertising and taxes on alcohol products, measures which are 'best buys' for NCDs which were also reinforced as the most effective in reducing harmful use of alcohol in the 2018 ‘Trouble Brewing’ report by Vital Strategies, NCD Alliance, Movendi International and Global Alcohol Policy Alliance (GAPA).  

The Mexico Salud-Hable Coalition invited key national and international stakeholders to endorse and share comments. These included Dr Gady Zabicky, National Commissioner on Addictions, Dr Miguel Malo, NCDs Adviser at WHO/PAHO Mexico, Dr Guillermina Natera, Director of the Collaborating Centre with WHO/PAHO at the National Institute of Psychiatry, and Mr Luis Manuel Encarnacion, Senior Capacity Development Officer at the NCD Alliance.

This Civil Society Report was supported by the NCD Alliance, as part of Mexico Salud-Hable’s participation in the NCD Alliance’s Advocacy Institute Accelerator Programme (2017-2019). 

You can access the full report in Spanish here

The Executive Summary is now available to read in Spanish and English