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Youth website SpunOut.ie is today calling on music acts appearing at Diageo’s Arthur’s Day events around the country to donate their fees to charities working with young people and adults suffering from alcohol related harm.
The headline acts scheduled for the alcohol marketing event taking place this Thursday include Biffy Clyro, Emeli Sandé, Iggy Azalea, Janelle Monáe and Irish acts Kodaline, Le Galaxie & The Script.
Last year A&E departments around Ireland saw a spike in the number of people admitted to hospital on Arthur’s Day due to alcohol related harm.
Alcohol related harm currently costs the Irish health system €4bn per annum, while the drinks industry contributes just €2bn back to the exchequer in tax.
Diageo acknowledged on RTÉ’s Today with Sean O’Rourke this morning that the aim of Arthur’s Day is to increase consumption, saying they chose Thursdays to hold the event as weekends were already busy enough.
“What we’re saying to the acts and their fans is simple; Diageo’s Arthur’s Day is a marketing exercise with the sole aim of increasing alcohol consumption without any regard to the harm caused.” says Ian Power, spokesperson for SpunOut.ie
“We only need to look at the recent Irish reports published on suicide and self harm which show the times at which people present at hospitals having self-harmed mirrors the pattern of increased alcohol consumption, peaking on Saturdays. Alcohol was a factor in 38% of all self harm cases in 2012.” he added.
“Acts can acknowledge the effect harmful drinking causes on our society by donating their fee (or the fee they would normally charge) to hard working charities such as the Aislinn Centre which help young people fighting addiction or the Rise Foundation which works with families affected by addiction.”
“We are also calling on the Government to urgently publish their alcohol strategy and to hold the drinks industry to account by making them prove the effectiveness of their “Drink Aware” campaign and compel them to publish research as to whether any of their ‘Drink Responsibly’ messages make a difference to consumption patterns.”
For more information call (01) 6753554 or email firstname.lastname@example.org