Wellington's Deputy Mayor wants to let homeless alcoholics drink booze

Wellington's Deputy Mayor wants to let homeless alcoholics drink booze

If Wellington's Deputy Mayor has his way, his city could be the site of the country's first "wet house".

Wet houses are shelters where homeless alcoholics are permitted to drink booze.

It sounds counterproductive, but one American programme says that's not how it pans out.

That project found that after two years, wet house residents cut their daily alcohol consumption by 40 percent.

Even on the days they drank most, they consumed 8 percent fewer drinks than before they moved into a wet house.

Australia is also exploring the idea, which is usually coupled with support programmes that encourage drinking in moderation and curbing harmful behaviour.

Canada actually takes it a step further - not just allowing alcohol, but actually giving qualifying residents 100ml of wine every 90 minutes.

They say their programme's reduced hospital visits by up to 80 percent.

And while the Wellington plan doesn't include buying booze for its residents, campaigners suggest we may need maverick approaches to help.

Newshub.

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