Alcohol Action Ireland to address Seanad Committee

Alcohol Action Ireland will address a Seanad Committee meeting tomorrow (Tuesday) to discuss curbing cancer through lifestyle changes.

Changes in lifestyle can prevent approximately one third of cancers and earlier in the year the Seanad Consultation Committee invited written submissions from interested groups or individuals on how Government and society respond to this challenge.

As part of its deliberations, the Committee has invited a number of key contributors, including Alcohol Action Ireland, to a public hearing on the issue, which will take place in the Seanad Chamber tomorrow, Tuesday, June 19.

Alcohol consumption is a major risk factor for cancer, with a significant proportion of the most lethal and common cancers attributable to alcohol consumption above low-risk limits.

Ireland has second highest rate of cancer in the world. We also have high levels of alcohol consumption with a majority of drinkers engaging in harmful drinking patterns. It’s clear that if we are to reduce the levels of cancer in Ireland, we need to take action to reduce alcohol consumption.

For further information please see Alcohol Action Ireland’s submission to the Seanad Public Consultation Committee on Alcohol and Cancer.

Present at the public hearing tomorrow will be Dr Kate Allen, Science and Communications Director at the World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF UK) – the principal UK charity dedicated to cancer prevention through healthy diet, physical activity and weight management. She will present to the Committee on how societal and governmental measures can help prevent lifestyle related cancers.

A recent report by Dr Allen’s charity projects a rise in new cancer cases in Ireland by up to by 72 per cent by 2030,   with lifestyle factors a significant component in that increase. The alarming predictions, which place Ireland at the top of an EU league table for projected cancer increases, are cause for major concern.

The public hearing will commence at 11 a.m. and is scheduled to run through until 5 p.m. Committee proceedings can be viewed online via this link.

The Seanad Committee was established in September 2011 to strengthen dialogue between Seanad Éireann and the public on a wide range of subjects in the area of public policy. View more details here.