Alcohol Action Ireland, the national charity for alcohol related issues, today voiced alarm that Ireland was again top of the European binge drinking league with one in four of us downing five drinks or more in one sitting in the previous month – double the European average.
Alcohol Action Ireland’s Policy Development Officer Cliona Murphy said: “Binge drinking affects all ages but young people are the group most likely to binge drink on a regular weekly basis. Binge drinking puts young people at greater risk of harm to themselves and others such as accidents, fights and other forms of violence.”
Ms Murphy said one of the key factors contributing to young people’s drinking was the unrelenting flow of alcohol marketing which only showed the positive aspects of alcohol and rarely the costs:
“Young people are inundated with sophisticated alcohol marketing whether on television, cinema, the internet, or social networking sites such as Facebook – it’s hard to imagine a sports, music or other cultural event in Ireland that isn’t sponsored by the alcohol industry. It’s time we recognise the cost of binge drinking and the price we all pay.”
The Eurobarometer survey found that of those surveyed, who said that they had drank in the past 30 days, 24% of Irish people admitted to usually having five or more drinks when they drank. Of that figure one in five said they consumed seven drinks or more. Hazardous drinking costs European countries some €125 billion every year and is estimated to be responsible for 195,000 deaths in these countries.
For further information contact: Alcohol Action Ireland (01) 878 0610