Dry January® takes on Parliament! Alcohol Change UK meet with politicians in Westminster for our low and no alcohol tasting event

February 2024 | 7 minutes

The All-Parliamentary Party Group (APPG) on Alcohol Harm teamed up with Alcohol Change UK to take Dry January® to Parliament to engage with MPs, Peers, and their staff. We spoke to them about the benefits of taking part in Dry January®, why we run the campaign every year, and why it works!

It was great to be joined at the event by our official Dry January® partners: Lyre’s, Lucky Saint, Nunc, Wise Bartender, and Mocktails who provided all attendees with a wide range of samples of their delicious low and no alcohol drinks.

Returning from a Christmas break can be a struggle for anyone – but to change the narrative of ‘January blues,’ we decided to present Dry January® to politicians in a fun yet educating approach.

By hosting this event, politicians not only had an opportunity to learn more about Dry January®, but also the work that Alcohol Change UK does all year round to reduce alcohol harm. They were also able to talk to our official partners and learn more about their businesses and what Parliamentary support can be provided to them in this rapidly growing market for low and no drinks.

They heard from the inspiring, Matt Phillips, Alcohol Change UK Ambassador and Co-founder of First Light Coffee, the official coffee of Dry January®, and Brie Barrios, Alcohol Change UK Community Champion about their experiences of giving up alcohol.

Brie shared her experience stating, “The APPG event provided an opportunity to share lived experiences and connect with others who are passionate about reducing alcohol harm. Although our stories and motivations are unique, there are always similarities about the negative impact alcohol had on our lives, and the numerous positive effects we all notice when shifting our relationship with alcohol. The whole experience was warm, supportive and powerful.”

We spoke to over 30 MPs, Peers, and staffers. We learned that some of the politicians and their staff were taking part in Dry January® themselves so were excited to explore new drinks to enjoy while they did it!

We were also thrilled to be joined by our guests: Millie Gooch, Founder of Sober Girl Society and Alcohol Change UK Ambassador, Suzanne Shaw, former Emmerdale star and founder of The Happy Health Club, Lauren White, Motivational Speaker and Alcohol Change UK Ambassador and Louisa Evans, Sobriety Author, Podcast Host and Therapist.

In 2024 there will be a General Election – this means Alcohol Change UK will continue to engage with as many politicians across all parties in Westminster to support our work to create a society free from alcohol harm and build up support to help us get meaningful action from the government to reduce alcohol harm.

All campaigners’ continued support is remarkably appreciated. Reaching out to your local MP, Prospective Parliamentary Candidates, and local councillors makes our campaign stronger. If you haven’t already, sign up to our campaigner list to learn or how you can help us reach candidates and engage with the new government, as we will be sending you information as soon as the election is announced!

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