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Thursday 27th October 2016

Teenage drinking doubled

19th March 2007

British teenagers are drinking twice as much as they did 15 years ago, says a UK charity.

A spokesperson for Alcohol Concern said that although the numbers of young drinkers has remained steady, the amount of alcohol consumed by those who are indulging has risen dramatically from 5.3 units weekly to 10.5.  Alcohol Concern also said that girls partake in more binge drinking than boys but that no-one really understood why.  The charity added that its research suggests teenagers are drinking more frequently; the proportion of young people drinking at least once a week rose from 13% in 1990 to 17% in 2005.

Speaking on behalf of the charity, Frank Soodeen said, "I think in the short term, what we need is sustained awareness campaigns by the government. They've started in the right direction with Know Your Limits, but we need to see a ruling programme for a few years before we can actually think of actually achieving culture change." Campaigners are also urging the government to serve harsher penalties on shops and bars that sell alcohol to underage drinkers and to provide better training for staff members faced with having to turn teenagers wanting drink away. 

It is believed that 60% of UK teenagers between the ages of 11 and 15 drink alcohol.

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