Raise legal drinking age in Singapore to 21

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Recently, Singapore parliament passed a Bill to raise the legal smoking age to 21 progressively after consultations with the public and taking into account the many adverse effects of smoking.

However, the legal drinking age was not raised and remains at 18. 

This seems that the government have left out the problem of youth getting hooked on alcohol. Little has also been done to tackle underage drinking as compared to underage smoking.

This can been seen from stores selling both alcohol and ciggrates having only a sticker sign stating the maximum fine for selling tobacco products to minors which is $10,000 as well as the reporting hotline for underage sales of tobacco products but none for sales of alcohol products to minors. Besides, there have been various news reports of many retailers having their tobacco licenses temporarily or permanently revoked for selling to minors, indicating zero- tolerance and tough enforcement actions the authorities sees and takes against underage smoking. However, there have been no news of enforcement actions against errant retailers, bars or clubs serving alcohol to minors. 

All these indicates that the government is lax and lenient against underage drinking which can give the young the impression that drinking is less harmful than smoking and that they can continue drinking.

But, as many studies have proven, alcohol puts young people at increased risk of physical and social harm, such as accidents and negative effects on brain development and education. 

Raising only the smoking age may lead to more young people turning to alcohol as an alternative, which could lead to binge drinking and alcohol addiction.

This could result in an increase in drink-driving accidents, alcohol intoxication and public disorder, threatening the peace and safety of the public.

Just imagine if youths between 18 and 21 who just wanted to smoke but was refused sales and decided to drink since they are legally able to - it will cause a whole lot of serious problems and consequences with them getting high and wasted, doing foolish stuffs and experiencing a hangover, adversely affecting their performance in school or in the army the next day and overall - their life. Worst still if they were to drive off in a vehicle while intoxicated , putting the lives not just their own but also the lives of others at a high risk. 

As such, I strongly feel that the minimum legal drinking age must be raised in tandem with the minimum legal smoking age. Tougher enforcement actions against underage drinking should also be taken.





Drinking and smoking ages around the world

Malaysia - Drinking 21, Smoking 18

Indonesia - Drinking 21, Smoking 18

Thailand- Drinking 20, Smoking 18

USA- Drinking 21(Statewide since 1980s and strictly enforced), Smoking 18-21

Iceland- Drinking 20, Smoking 18

Delhi, India - Drinking 25, Smoking 18

Lithuania - Drinking 20, Smoking 18

Oman - Drinking 21, Smoking 18

Palau - Drinking 21 , Smoking 18

Micronesia - Drinking 21, Smoking 18

Tokelau - Drinking 21 , Smoking 18

Saskatchewan, Canada - Drinking 19, Smoking 18

Malta - Drinking 17, Smoking 18


Notice that in most of the places with different smoking and drinking age, the drinking age is higher than the smoking age, indicating that alcohol is potentially more harmful than tobacco. 

Also notice that 3 of Singapore neighboring countries- Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand, have a higher drinking age. Singapore should also join them to raise the drinking age in order to SAVE LIVES. 



Please sign and share this petition if you care and wish to SAVE LIVES.