Ireland: 3 Alcohol Deaths Per Day
Ireland has a problem with alcohol but the alcohol industry stands in the way for comprehensive solutions: every day three deaths are alcohol related, by the end of an average week 20 more people will have died. But Big Alcohol’s spin portrays the situation in a completely misleading light.
Alcohol harm in Ireland
Alcohol harm is pervasive, affecting public health, families and the social fabric, and the economy.
- Overburdened hospitals manage 1,500 beds every day for alcohol-related issues. One in every 11 kids faces the trauma of an alcohol-fuelled family.
- Meanwhile, 800 people won’t go to work the next day due to alcohol consumption.
- Children continue to start drinking too early, with an estimated 60,000 doing so this year.
- One in three youngsters have been drunk within the last month and two out of three have consumed alcohol in their lifetime.
- Over the last two generations Irish alcohol use has doubled.
- Alcohol harm costs at least €2.35 billion every year to manage the impact of alcohol on Irish health service, on Irish streets and businesses, the courts, and prisons.
Every day our lives are bombarded with alcohol marketing, everywhere you go big alcohol is right there in your face,” writes Eunan McKinney.
It’s on the side of the bus, the promo at a concert, the gear on footballers or the ad before the news on the telly. There’s just no escape.
[Alcohol] is available on nearly every street corner. You can’t buy a carton of milk without tripping over a bag of cans. Even our petrol stations sell it.”
Solutions are at hand but blocked by Big Alcohol
In 2015, after a long delay, the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill was introduced to the Oireachtas, the Irish Parliament in Dublin. That was more than 600 days ago.
The Bill has been fought every step of the way by Big Alcohol lobbyists who, like Big Tobacco, want to protect its multi-billion profits at all cost.
If passed, it will introduce reasonable regulations with regard to minimum price for cheap strong alcohol, health labelling, marketing, promotion and alcohol availability.
These policies are meant to be implemented in an integrated way. They are designed to work together for sustainable public policy-making and comprehensive outcomes – to reduce alcohol consumption and change the current alcohol norm.
This Bill is needed and offers us all, every man, woman and child, a historic opportunity to change that culture and make Ireland a healthier place,” writes Mr McKinney.