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Leo Varadkar Launches Bill To Tackle Ireland's Alcohol Problem

By James Fenton

July 18, 2017 at 8:04am

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Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has launched a new national strategy on drug and alcohol use in Ireland, the Irish Times is reporting. 

The Public Health (Alcohol) Bill will place restrictions on the sale of alcohol, separate it from other products in retail outlets, and limit advertising. Varadkar hopes that it will become law by the end of this year.

Speaking at the launch at Dublin Castle he said:

“Alcohol is the main drug of abuse in Ireland. Like all drugs of abuse, it causes people to behave in ways that they would never consider if they were sober.

“We need to face up to that as a society. The solution is not prohibition. The solution is denormalisation, making sure that alcohol is no longer treated as a normal grocery, something that you buy in a shop as if it were like buying fruit or buying a pizza.

“It’s not. It is a drug. Prohibition won’t work. But we must make it less normal and provide more supports to enable people escape from addiction.”

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