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AA calls for tighter restrictions on alcohol sales in Yucatan

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AA members meet in Yucatan, where a national meeting of the organization is being held this weekend. Photo: Sipse

At the XXXIX national Alcoholics Anonymous convention in Merida, members are calling for more restrictions on liquor sales in Yucatan.

In addition to limiting the hours in which beer, wine and spirits can be sold, former world boxing champion Guty Espadas Jr. said that legislation should be designed to reduce the incidence of alcoholism in Yucatecan.

“Controlling the hours of selling beverages is not enough to attack the problem of alcoholism,” said Espadas. “Concrete actions and the promotion of sports can offer better results to steer the population and especially children from alcohol consumption.”

The public is invited to Poliforum Zamná today and Saturday at the Tecnológico de Mérida to learn how to get help with alcoholism.

An estimated 14,000 AA groups operate in Mexico. Of those, 500 AA groups are in the state, including 280 in Merida, serving 5,000 people who struggle with alcohol.

Over half the population in Yucatan drinks liquor, but only 8.1 percent of the population has been found to be dependent on alcohol, according to the National Commission Against Addictions.

Alcoholics Anonymous, an international mutual aid fellowship, works to enable its members to “stay sober and help other alcoholics achieve sobriety.” The organization was founded in 1935 by an Ohio man, Bill Wilson. To this day, one way to refer to an AA member is as a “friend of Bill.”

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