Alcohol and night-time economy

 

Sir, – Your correspondent (Letters, September 21st) is correct to point out our overtly comfortable relationship with problem drinking in this country, and the fact that inebriation is not a defence in court.

However, given the fact that World Health Organisation data estimates that Germany consumes a similar amount of alcohol per head as Ireland, I’m not sure the German example, as given by your letter writer, is one we necessarily should be following.

I suspect a relaxing of licensing laws is unlikely to affect our gross consumption, and might instead simply change the pace of consumption.

Public health measures such as were taken for tobacco, such as increased taxes and levies, plain packaging, segregation, images of alcohol-related harm on packaging, more investment and advertising of cessation supports, more public education and a blanket ban on alcohol advertising might be more appropriate interventions.

– Yours, etc,

DIARMUID Ó HICÍ,­

Ballsbridge,

Dublin 4.