Friday 24 November 2017

Call to hike booze price to prevent repeat of gig chaos

Edel O'Connell

THE wide availability of below-cost alcohol is fuelling the kind of anti-social behaviour which marred last Saturday night's Phoenix Park gig in Dublin, researchers warned yesterday.

A report from the Health Research Board (HRB) has revealed more than four out of five people believe current levels of alcohol consumption in Ireland are too high.

However, the survey, 'Alcohol: public knowledge, attitudes and behaviour', published yesterday, also revealed few people actually understand what a standard drink is.

Chief HRB researcher Dr Jean Long said: "Young people make it clear that the price of alcohol affects their behaviour, so increasing price would be a good start to reduce consumption among young people and help prevent the type of situation which emerged in the Phoenix Park last Saturday.

"These results indicate that young people's purchasing of alcohol is most influenced by pricing," added Dr Long.

The findings revealed it would take a price increase of 25pc or more to get people to decrease the amount of alcohol they purchase.

Although the report found three in five people would support a minimum unit price for alcohol, there was a distinct lack of support for this measure among the young.

Alcohol fuelled public disorder cost €1.2bn in 2007 and of those surveyed 71pc said they believed alcohol drinkers should contribute to these costs.

Just one in 10 (9pc) people know the recommended weekly number of standard units that they can safely consume -- 14 for women and 21 for men.

Irish Independent

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