Every 10 seconds a person dies from alcohol-related causes. This week, Tabor Group are recognising the 9th Annual Awareness Week on Alcohol Related Harm (AWARH) which is from the 15th to 19th of November. AWARH was initiated in 2013 by a group of like-minded organisations following three roundtable meetings on an integrated approach to alcohol-related harm. During those meetings, the organisations agreed that an EU-level awareness raising campaign should be established to provide information on the detrimental effects associated with alcohol consumption. Many policymakers and healthcare organisations have since joined in to highlight the negative effects of alcohol and call for greater policy action to address the problems it can cause.
This year’s theme is ‘A Safer Europe’ which we will be focusing on in this blog. The SAFER initiative was launched 3 years ago with the aim to help reduce and prevent alcohol-related harm, including deaths. AWARH this year is collaborating with the World Health Organisation’s European Region, to give the SAFER initiative a platform and help showcase it.
‘SAFER’ is used as an acronym, standing for five of the most cost-efficient interventions that can be made to reduce alcohol-related harm. In this blog, we are going to take a closer look at each of these interventions:
The first cost-efficient intervention in the SAFER initiative is to both authorise and enforce restrictions on the availability of alcohol to the public and selling of alcohol through the introduction of laws, policies, and programmes. This can be an important way to reduce the harmful use of alcohol among the public. It can help prevent young people and other vulnerable or high-risk groups from gaining access to alcohol easily.
Everyone is very much aware of the risks and consequences of driving under the influence of alcohol and that it significantly increases the chances of being involved in an accident putting themselves at risk and others. This intervention proposes to authorise and enforce strong drink-driving laws and encourages drink driving checkpoints and random breath testing to help turn the ride and reduce the harmful effects of drink driving.
In order to help individuals limit, reduce or stop their alcohol intake completely to improve health or reduce the harmful effects, health professionals play a key role. The necessary interventions need to be readily available and provided by professional health services in order to help those struggling as a result of alcohol as well as their families.
The next cost-effective and impactful intervention is by authorising and enforcing bans or substantial restrictions on the advertising, sponsorship, and promotion of alcohol brands and products. Reducing the exposure of alcohol, particularly on social media and the digital world will help protect children and young people from the pressures to begin drinking alcohol as well as many other public health benefits.
The final cost-effective intervention to control and reduce the harmful effect of alcohol is by introducing alcohol taxes and pricing policies. This intervention has been proven to be an effective alcohol control measure for the general public and also provides governments with revenue to both help those struggling due to alcohol related harm as well as the economic costs associated with harmful use of alcohol.
During AWARH 2021 the focus will be on two specific SAFER interventions:
Raising awareness is a key aim of AWARH, and you can help support the cause by sending a letter to policymakers asking them to commit to do more against alcohol-related harm both in Ireland and in Europe. Secondly, you can support the campaign on social media by using the hashtag: #AWARH21
Tabor Group provides residential & community-based addiction treatment programmes to men and woman over 18 years of age, who are struggling with addiction to alcohol, drugs, and gambling. If you or a loved one are suffering from an addiction, get help today. We can help you recover in a healthy, friendly environment and beat your addiction. Do not hesitate to contact one of our counsellors today for information by calling +353 (21) 488 7710 for Cork or +353 (1) 639 2962 for Dublin, or alternatively you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We can help you.