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[thejournal.ie] Oireachtas agenda: alcohol sponsorship, court reporting and animal welfare. (27 Mar 2013)

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TheJournal.ie‘s One to Watch

The Transport and Communications deals with one of the many issues that caused friction within the government while Roisin Shortall was at the Department of Health: alcoholic sponsorship of sporting events.

As mentioned above, one of the main splits in the early days of the Fine Gael and Labour government was Roisin Shortall’s plan to ban the sponsorship of sporting events by alcoholic companies. Leo Varadkar, whose department covers sport, was against the idea as it could lower the overall investment in sport.

This morning, representatives from the IRFU, the GAA and the FAI all attend to offer their thoughts on how banning alcohol sponsorship would affect them.

Each naturally has a lot at stake: the IRFU’s four provinces all consider the Heineken Cup as a chief target, while the GAA could argue that it would be difficult to substitute Guinness’s sponsorship of the All-Ireland Hurling Championships.

The FAI would be less apparently effected at top level (though the only silverware ever won by the national senior team was the Carling Nations Cup…) – but the moves could have effects on the game at grassroots level, if individual clubs are forced to drop longstanding sponsorship.

Each, meanwhile, will no doubt face questions on how they can claim to encourage athleticism and bodily integrity while their main competitions all carry the logos of alcohol companies. It should make for an interesting morning.


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