HL Deb 15 March 1979 vol 399 c852WA

asked Her Majesty's Government:

How they propose to establish some balance between the scale of advertising by the commercial interests promoting increased consumption of tobacco and alcohol and the derisory resources of the Health Education Council to combat the health hazards of over indulgence.


Within the limits of its annual budget the Health Education Council has full discretion in allocating funds to particular preventive activities which range, of course, much more widely than health education against smoking and the misuse of alcohol. While these two items always command a substantial part of the Council's resources, it would be unrealistic to expect the Council's campaign expenditure to match in any way the scale of advertising by the tobacco and alcohol industries. None the less, I would remind my noble friend that my right honourable friend the Secretary of State for Social Services has increased the resources available to the Health Education Council substantially for each of the three financial years 1977–78 to 1979–80.

Apart from the Health Education Council, voluntary bodies such as Action on Smoking and Health and the National Council on Alcoholism are given financial help by my Department. Area health authorities and local authority education departments also make a significant separate contribution to health education.