Alcohol Health Alliance Ireland wins Best Public Affairs award for its campaign to support the Public Health Alcohol Act

l-r Mari O’Leary Chairperson, Public Relations Consultants Association; Siobhán Creaton, Head of Public Affairs and Advocacy, RCPI; Prof Frank Murray, Chair, Alcohol Health Alliance Ireland

Alcohol Health Alliance Ireland

The alliance, was established in 2015 by the Royal College of Physicians of Ireland and Alcohol Action Ireland to support the Public Health Alcohol Bill. After a co-ordinated campaign - in the face of huge opposition from the drinks industry, the Public Health Alcohol Act came into law in 2018.

The alliance, Chaired by Prof Frank Murray, a liver specialist at Beaumont Hospital and former RCPI President includes public health campaigners, medical experts, political representatives, NGOs and others committed to reducing health harm caused by alcohol use in Ireland, including the HSE, the College of Psychiatrists of Ireland, the Irish Heart Foundation and the Dental Health Foundation.

We are delighted to receive this award as recognition of the tireless efforts of our doctors, member organisations and individuals and political advocates in bringing the legislation over the line after many years- the first piece of legislation to address alcohol as a public health concern in Ireland. We are grateful to Minister for Health, Simon Harris and An Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar and we welcome his comments on Friday that he intends to implement Minimum Unit Pricing in the very near future.

Siobhán Creaton

Head of Public Affairs and Advocacy, RCPI
Member representation

Campaign Strategy

The Alliance reviewed international evidence and developed messaging to inform the public and policy makers about the health harms and social issues associated with alcohol and built a campaign to counter opposing arguments and to reflect the far reaching public support for this important legislation. The Public Health Alcohol Act contains evidence-based measures such as Minimum Unit Pricing, separation of alcohol within shops, restrictions on advertising and marketing to children and teenagers and health information for consumers.

Pictured, representatives from member organisation:

Back l-r Andrea Ryder, College of Psychiatrists of Ireland; Prof Frank Murray; Suzanne Costello, Institute of Public Health; Yvonne McCahill, RCPI; Sheila Gilheany, Alcohol Action Ireland

Front l-r Etain Kett, Dental Health Foundation; Siobhán Creaton, RCPI; Catherine Keane, Alcohol Action Ireland.