Bill will help to unravel Ireland’s relationship with alcohol and tackle significant alcohol-related harms to individuals, families and society
The passage of the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill is a critical moment in Ireland’s relationship with alcohol, according to the Institute of Public Health in Ireland who has welcomed the Bill.
The legislation passed all stages of the Oireachtas last night (Wednesday) after more than 1,000 days. The Bill will now go to the Seanad for final considerations.
The Institute of Public Health in Ireland (IPH) supports the development of policies and laws to tackle alcohol-related harm across the island of Ireland.
Dr Helen McAvoy, Director of Policy at IPH, said: “This legalisation will slowly unravel the close relationship that Ireland has developed over the years with harmful consumption of alcohol and denormalise it, if not for the current population, but for future generations.
“Our current pattern of drinking means significant harms to drinkers and their families, together with significant service demand on both health services and the police.
“Measures included in the Bill, such as minimum unit pricing, health warnings on labels, and structural separation of alcohol products from other products in stores are based on clear evidence. The measures in the Bill will have a positive effect on reducing inequalities in alcohol-related harms affecting our most disadvantaged communities.”
Key alcohol related stats in Ireland;
- 39% of drinkers in Ireland binge drink. The World Health Organization defines binge drinking as 6 or more standard drinks in one sitting.
- In 2013, three people in Ireland died each day as a result of drinking alcohol (Health Research Board)
- In 2013, an estimated 5,315 people on had lost their job due to alcohol use and an estimated 167,170 people suffered an alcohol-related assault. (Health Research Board)
For further information on the IPH work on alcohol policy, please visit https://www.publichealth.ie/alcohol-policy