Letter: Lottery as a means to prevent crime

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Sir: Peter Kilfoyle (Letters, 20 March) is a self-confessed member of the Lottery Jeremiahs Club. But he has it wrong about crime prevention. Nobody, I hope, is suggesting that a police department becomes the sixth recipient of lottery funds. What the other five (arts, sports, heritage, charities and the Millennium Fund) are dedicated to providing is already a form of crime prevention.

If that seems naive, please remember that vandalism, to people as well as buildings, is at its most savage when the quality of life is at its lowest. In an age when unemployment and disillusion may be inevitable, what life has to offer must be both varied and of high quality. Hence the 'Quality of life', and hence the Lottery.

As a self-confessed member of the Lottery Promotion Company, I do not believe the lottery should be taxed at all. The expenditure of its untaxed proceeds would bring back to the Treasury, indirectly but measurably, far more than tax could possibly provide. A 12 per cent tax is bad enough, and ought to be reduced, but the idea that it might rise . . . Please, Mr Kilfoyle, not so loud. Somebody might hear you.

Yours faithfully,

BIRKETT

House of Lords

London, SW1

22 March

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