Friday, March 2, 2012

Who will sell hard alcohol in NE Seattle?

Yesterday, the Capitol Hill blog reported that 72 stores in Seattle have applied for, or stated that they intend to apply for, licenses to sell hard alcohol as of March 1, 2012.  The blog includes a list and map of all stores that have applied. 

According to the map, 16 stores located in NE Seattle have applied to sell hard alcohol.  These include Walgreens, Safeway, QFC, Fred Meyer and Target.  This change will significantly increase the hard alcohol outlet density in our community.  Prior to June 1, when I-1183 goes into affect, hard alcohol is sold in 3 NE Seattle stores. 

High alcohol outlet density is described as a public health problem by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention's Community Guide:

An alcohol outlet is a place where alcohol may be legally sold for the buyer to drink there (on-premises outlets, such as bars or restaurants) or elsewhere (off-premises outlets, such as liquor stores). Density refers to the number of alcohol outlets in a given area.

The Community Preventive Services Task Force recommends the use of regulatory authority (e.g., through licensing and zoning) to limit alcohol outlet density on the basis of sufficient evidence of a positive association between outlet density and excessive alcohol consumption and related harms (including underage drinking).

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