Yesterday's presentation of the campaign against underage drinking | Pimem


Five thousand posters are to be distributed in shops and bars in Majorca which state in three languages - Catalan, Castellano and English - "We don't sell alcohol to minors here; we are concerned for your health".

The initiative was announced yesterday by the health minister Patricia Gómez and representatives of eleven business organisations which are behind the campaign. The vice-president of the Pimem small to medium-sized businesses association, Miquel Torrens, said that there is "unanimous" business agreement on protecting minors and tackling underage drinking.

Carmen Planas, president of the CAEB Confederation of Balearic Business Associations, referred to underage drinking as a serious public health problem. The whole of society has to show responsibility, and "business is expressing its commitment to zero tolerance of underage drinking".

Planas explained that pupils from secondary schools in the main tourist resorts in the Balearics will carry out a "joint action" to distribute the posters. This will be in June. The health and education ministries have given the campaign their full backing.

Gómez observed that the latest survey of schoolchildren drink and drug use revealed that 78% of 14 to 17-year olds had drunk alcohol in the previous twelve months and that 44% admitted to having been drunk. Despite the sale of alcohol to under-18s being banned, 58% said they were able to buy drink in supermarkets and 46% from a local shop, while 32% had drunk alcohol in bars and 26% in discos.

Other organisations involved in the campaign include the Majorca Hoteliers Federation, the Majorca Restaurants Association, the Afedeco association for smaller retailers and the Acotur association of tourist service businesses.