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01/11/2006

Diageo signs a deal with ETSC to improve road safety

Diageo, one of the largest drinks manufacturers in the world, has signed a two-year deal with the European Transport Safety Council (ETSC), an Brussels-based organisation set up to improve road safety across Europe.

Under Diageo's deal with the ETSC, Europe's first ‘Drink Driving Policy Network' will be set up in Brussels to come up with policies to combat alcohol-related road deaths. Diageo will fund European research into how to stop those who drink-and-drive from becoming repeat offenders.

This arrangement is rather controversial and some public health bodies have reacted unfavourably to it.

The ETSC is a partner in a number of projects funded by DG SANCO on alcohol and health issues such as the Pathways to Health Project and it had become a regular partner of the public health NGO community who relied on the objectiveness and rigour of ETSC data collection and policy analysis (see for example Voice Project - http://www.etsc.be/documents/MTR_VOICE.pdf.

A critical aspect of the credibility of the work of the ETSC, particularly on the topic of drink driving was that it had no links or financial sponsorship from the alcohol industry (because of the conflict of interest with their basic business model of increasing sales).

The story will be covered more in detail in our next issue.

For more information:

http://www.etsc.be/documents/Diageo%20partnership.pdf

http://www.etsc.be/sponsors.php

http://www.diageo.com/en-row/NewsAndMedia/PressReleases/2006/PressRelease22NovEuropedriving.htm