| 3.7°C Dublin

Time for vintners to stop whingeing

"IRISH pubs sell Irish products, almost exclusively" – Paul Keane is delusional if he really believes that! Guinness is owned by Diageo, a major UK/global company. Carlsberg? The last time I looked they were Danish, and Budweiser, yep, still American.



Most of the wine sold is French, Australian or American and most of the spirits are foreign to boot. Maybe Mr Keane should do a stock-take before making such statements. Of course, he may well be talking about the extortionately priced ‘soft drinks', crisps and nuts, which are absurdly expensive.

The real reason pubs are closing is easy to figure out. They are too expensive and the publicans are out of touch with what is happening in Ireland. Price is the major factor, that's why people are buying from the supermarkets. Also, in rural areas the stricter enforcement of drink driving laws has made many think twice about driving under the influence.

The Celtic Tiger is dead but the vintners are still riding the tiger's back and still charging tiger-era prices. They need to see the devastating reality of ‘Fianna Failure Ireland’. Stop fleecing customers and start offering some value for money for a change. And enough with the whingeing, please.

E APPLEBY

HAMPSHIRE, UK

Lung cancer is easily prevented

THE Irish Cancer Society’s lung cancer awareness campaign to identify patients with lung cancer early is very welcome. However, it is important that the key message about lung cancer is not lost – that it is a preventable cancer. If you don't smoke, and if you are not exposed to someone else's smoke, you are highly unlikely to get it.

So for smokers, quit smoking today, or tomorrow, or the day after that. It is important that smokers keep trying to quit, even if they have been unsuccessful in the past. Your GP, pharmacist or local health centre will be able to help you.

Www.giveupsmoking.ie or the National Smokers' Quitline (1850 201 203) also provide excellent support.

There is a much better chance of reducing illness and deaths from lung cancer if it is prevented in the first instance.

DR FENTON HOWELL

SPOKESPERSON ON TOBACCO, FACULTY OF PUBLIC HEALTH MEDICINE, ROYAL COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS OF IRELAND

ANNE McMONAGLE

FACULTY OF PUBLIC HEALTH MEDICINE, ROYAL COLLEGE OF PHYSICIANS OF IRELAND, FREDERICK HOUSE, 19 SOUTH

FREDERICK STREET, DUBLIN 2

We should ratify disability treaty

THE recent ratification by the EU of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities is an important development that should be welcomed by people with disabilities and by all organisations working on their behalf.

This is the first comprehensive human rights treaty to be ratified by the EU as a whole. It has also been signed by all 27 EU member states and ratified by 16 of these. This ratification represents a major policy shift toward enforcing human rights obligations and putting disability on top of the human rights agenda.

Ireland should now hasten the process of ratifying this important piece of international law. The Convention aims to ensure that people with disabilities can enjoy their rights on an equal basis with all other citizens.

DAVID MCALLISTER

NATIONAL DIRECTOR,

CBM IRELAND