197650 Understanding the importance of the 21st Amendment in state-based regulation

Monday, November 9, 2009: 4:30 PM

Stephen Diamond, JD, PhD , University of Miami School of Law, Coral Gables, FL
Effective state law is a necessary condition for successful local public health initiatives to control the consumption of alcohol. Under the aegis of the Twenty-first Amendment, state-based regulation of alcoholic beverage reflected an appreciation that laws were necessary, but not sufficient to control abuse. Laws were to be sufficiently restrictive so as not to stimulate excessive consumption and abuse, but not so restrictive as to stimulate illicit and therefore unregulated manufacture, distribution and sale. The public health community after the repeal of Prohibition was focused largely on alcoholics, an approach that met with industry approval. In recent decades, public health advocacy has evolved, less confident of the identity of abusers, and more concerned with strategies to reduce aggregate demand. However, judges are moving in the opposite direction. They demand quantified evidence of the success of each specific regulation in reducing abuse and are skeptical of the pro-temperance purpose of trade practices legislation and other indirect legal mechanisms to constrain the industry's effort to stimulate sales. This presentation will explain why public health advocates should be concerned that courts are seemingly rejecting aggregate solutions and instead relying on targeted approaches, and will suggest how to defend state crucial regulation.

Learning Objectives:
1) Explain the strategy behind state alcoholic beverage regulation protected by the 21st Amendment. 2) Describe the lawsuits that threaten regulation. 3) Explain why the public health community should support state regulation.

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I have a law degree, a Ph.D. in American history, and a post graduate degree in social anthropology. I have taught alcoholic beverage law for almost fifteen years, written "The Repeal Program" in Social and Economic Control of Alcohol The 21st Amendment in the 21st Century, edited by Carole L. Jurkiewicz and Murphy J. Painter, and spoken to state regulators and lawmakers, including the National Conference of State Liquor Administrators, the Legal Symposium of the National Alcoholic Beverage Control Association, and the National Association of State Legislatures about alcoholic beverage regulation on a number of occasions.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.