Alcohol Health Alliance Ireland, which brought together 62 organisations, commended for 3-year campaign at Awards for Excellence in Public Relations


The alliance, was established in 2015 by the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland and Alcohol Action Ireland to support the Public Health Alcohol Bill. After a co-ordinated campaign – in the face of huge opposition from the drinks industry, the Public Health Alcohol Act came into law in 2018.

The alliance, Chaired by Prof Frank Murray, a liver specialist at Beaumont Hospital and former RCPI President includes public health campaigners, medical experts, political representatives, NGOs and others committed to reducing health harm caused by alcohol use in Ireland, including the HSE, the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland, the Irish Heart Foundation and the Dental Health Foundation.

Siobhán Creaton, Head of Public Affairs at the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland accepted the Award on behalf of the alliance. “We are delighted to receive this award as recognition of the tireless efforts of our doctors, member organisations and individuals and political advocates in bringing the legislation over the line after many years – the first piece of legislation to address alcohol as a public health concern in Ireland.

“We are grateful to Minister for Health Simon Harris, and An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar and we welcome his comments on Friday that he intends to implement Minimum Unit Pricing in the very near future” she said.

The Alliance reviewed international evidence and developed messaging to inform the public and policy makers about the health harms and social issues associated with alcohol and built a campaign to counter opposing arguments and to reflect the far reaching public support for this important legislation. The Public Health Alcohol Act contains evidence-based measures such as Minimum Unit Pricing, separation of alcohol within shops, restrictions on advertising and marketing to children and teenagers and health information for consumers.

What the judges said about our campaign

The winning Public Affairs entry details an intensive, hard-working campaign.  Expert stakeholder alliances and evidence-based communications were employed to keep the issue to the fore for more than three years.   The objective – to support the enactment of legislative change – was successful in the face of a well-resourced and culturally-embedded opposition. 

About Alcohol Health Alliance

About the Awards for Excellence in Public Relations

The Awards for Excellence in Public Relations is the beacon for best practice in Irish public relations and communications. Award winners set the benchmark for work within our sector, and showcase the best our profession has to offer.

Awarding bodies

Public Relations Institute of Ireland

Public Relations Consultants Association