Fine Gael Seanad Drugs Spokesman Senator Jerry Buttimer today (Friday) called for a national debate on the use of alcohol in Irish society.
Speaking following the official opening ceremony of new offices and a family therapy room at Tabor Lodge in Cork, Senator Buttimer said, “Drug and alcohol misuse remains a real and major challenge in many communities and the work being carried out in Tabor Lodge is one that is supportive, life enhancing and so supportive of many people.”
“I am pleased that the funding for this project was provided by the National Drugs Strategy. This project allows for the provision of much needed office space in Tabor Lodge, whilst the family therapy room will facilitate developments in the Tabor Lodge family services. I very much welcome the new education programme and extension of the family programme. These are pivotal as part of the wider services provided by Tabor Lodge.
“Today we have a new generation of people who worryingly use alcohol excessively and view this as being ‘cool’. There is a growing dependency on alcohol which we must alter. That is why it is necessary that we as a nation engage and participate in a national discourse on how we can use alcohol.
“It is absolutely crazy that some chain stores can sell alcohol so cheaply and advertise so blatantly. In the past few years we have witnessed a spiralling increase in the number of off licence’s selling alcohol. This cannot be allowed to continue. It is the duty of Government on behalf of the people to legislate, monitor and bring about change.
“Equally as part of the discourse on alcohol use we must look at the relationship between sport and alcohol. The relationship of alcohol with sport through sponsorship of sporting events is one that we must seriously look at. It is important that we have a debate on the importance and value of sport and how sport should be financially supported.”