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Changing Scotland's relationship with alcohol: a discussion paper on our strategic approach



5. The Purpose of the Scottish Government is to focus Government and public services on creating a more successful country, with opportunities for all of Scotland to flourish, through increasing economic sustainable growth. The evidence shows that building a healthy and sensible relationship with alcohol will be pivotal to realising our Purpose and four out of five of our Strategic Objectives. We must help and support people to make better choices about alcohol if we are attain our ambitions for Scotland.

6. The Government Economic Strategy sets out how we will work collaboratively with the private, public and third sectors in pursuit of our Purpose. A set of high level Purpose Targets have been identified to ensure that growth is shared by all of Scotland, focussing on:

  • improving our productivity and competitiveness;
  • increasing our labour market participation; and
  • stimulating population growth.

7. Underpinning the Government's Purpose and Economic Strategy, are five Strategic Objectives - to make Scotland Wealthier and Fairer, Safer and Stronger, Healthier, Smarter and Greener. To fully achieve these objectives we need to tackle alcohol misuse.

8. The Strategic Objectives themselves are supported by 15 national outcomes which describe in more detail what the Scottish Government wants to achieve over the next ten years. Policies to tackle alcohol misuse will make a positive contribution to delivering over half of our published national outcomes:

  • we live longer and healthier lives;
  • we have tackled the significant inequalities in Scottish life;
  • we have strong, resilient and supportive communities where people take responsibility for their own actions and how they affect others;
  • we live our lives safe from crime, disorder and danger;
  • we realise our full economic potential with more and better employment opportunities for our people;
  • our young people are more successful learners, confident individuals, effective contributors and responsible citizens;
  • we have improved the life chances for children, young people and families at risk; and
  • our children have the best start in life and are ready to succeed.

9. In addition, in recognition of the need to build a healthier relationship with alcohol in pursuit of our objectives, we also have a specific national indicator, related to excessive consumption, to reduce alcohol-related hospital admissions by 2011.