20 Feb 2015

Liquor industry agency criticised

7:35 pm on 20 February 2015

The liquor industry has again been accused of having too much sway in the agency set up to stem the harm caused by alcohol.

In a paper published in the New Zealand Medical Journal today, New Zealand and Australian experts criticised the agency's ability to address drinking issues.

The Alcohol Advisory Council was canned in 2012, and its responsibilities handed over to the Health Promotion Agency.

But the paper said the agency was flawed from the start because a member of the industry, Katherine Rich, sat on its board.

It said the agency could not hand down harsh criticisms of the Government's choices, and could not give independent and fearless advice on alcohol policies.

Earlier this year more than 30 health researchers signed a letter asking for an investigation into Ms Rich's involvement in the agency.

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