IRELAND: Dept of Health dismisses advertising ban
A recommendation that all drinks advertising in Ireland be banned has been effectively ruled out by the Irish Department of Health.
A report, organised by the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Health and Children, studied alcohol misuse by young people in the country, and recommended a ban on alcohol advertising. The report also recommended that suppliers of alcohol should have identification, such as a barcode, on each item sold.
Other recommendations made by the Committee included the issuance of a report by local authorities on local levels of drinking in public parks by young people, and the appointment of specialist alcohol nurses in each hospital A&E department.
The Department of Health reacted to the report, released on Monday, saying that it had proposals at an advanced stage for legislation to limit alcohol advertising to young people, along with a series of initiatives aimed at reducing alcohol consumption. The legislation, which will be introduced later this year, is expected to outlaw advertisements which suggest that alcohol can enhance your life or make you more attractive.
Alcohol advertisements will also be required to carry health warnings, and alcohol sponsorship of events involving under-18s will also be banned.
A spokeswoman for the Department told the Irish Times, however, that an outright ban was not planned. Such a ban could be contrary to European law on the free movement of goods and services, she told the newspaper.
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