The Tragic Cost of Sunday Alcohol Sales
|Thursday, March 27, 2008||
Contact: Office of Communications 404-651-7774
An Op-Ed By Governor Sonny Perdue
Do no harm. It may sound like a simple concept, but it is one that I am afraid supporters of Sunday alcohol sales may have forgotten.
Above all else, I believe it is the responsibility of the Governor and the General Assembly to reject a piece of legislation that hurts more people than it helps. Allowing the sale of alcohol in grocery stores as well as liquor stores on Sundays will do far more harm than good. In fact, other than those who profit from those sales, it will not help anyone.
In the 1990’s, the citizens of
The sponsors of the
Now, I have always been a data-driven decision maker, so let me share the numbers with you. The study found that alcohol-related crashes increased by 29 percent on Sundays in counties that allowed sales. Those additional crashes led to a 42 percent increase in alcohol-related fatalities on Sundays. If we apply these same percentages to
No other day of the week saw a statistically significant change in the percentage of alcohol-related crashes and fatalities after the enacted legislation, according to the study. Counties that chose not to participate saw their Sunday accident and fatality statistics remain similar to before.
The Republican principle of individual freedom is just as important to me as it is to my colleagues in the legislature, but so is the principle of protecting innocent Georgians. If you have ever comforted the parents or grandparents of a young person lost in a DUI crash, then you know that the cost of this proposal is too great and the damage it stands to inflict is too heavy a burden for innocent families to bear.
I know that Georgians expect me as their Governor to do all that I can to make the people of this state as safe as possible. That’s why I have made creating a Safe Georgia one of the cornerstones of my administration, and that’s why I will continue to argue against this legislation out of concern for the safety of every Georgian.
I urge the members of the General Assembly to heed the warning conveyed in the final sentence of the