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Greater Manchester residents 'pay £436 annual bill to combat alcohol abuse'

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image captionCouncils in Greater Manchester are uniting to tackle problems associated with alcohol abuse

Councils are uniting to tackle alcohol abuse after a report claimed the problem costs every person in Greater Manchester £436 a year.

The Greater Manchester Combined Authority study puts the total annual cost of dealing with excessive drinking at £1.2bn.

The report recommends a joint approach by 10 councils, police and the NHS to tackle the problem.

Bury Council leader Mike Connolly said: "We must join forces now."

A set of recommendations drawn up in the report includes a fresh push to "ensure licensing powers are more effective and used consistently".

'Consistent challenge'

Greater emphasis should be placed on protecting victims of domestic abuse, the report says, while a new focus must be placed on education.

The proposed strategy will be put before council leaders at the next meeting of the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities on 29 August.

Assistant Chief Constable Garry Shewan, of Greater Manchester Police, said: "Alcohol-related crime and disorder is a consistent challenge for the police and our partners.

"I am confident that once a strategy is agreed it will ensure that measures are put in place which will have a long-lasting impact on alcohol abuse in Greater Manchester and the problems caused by it."

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