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Home > The untold story: harms experienced in the Irish population due to others’ drinking.

Hope, Ann and Barry, Joseph and Byrne, Sean (2018) The untold story: harms experienced in the Irish population due to others’ drinking. Dublin: Health Service Executive.

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Key Findings from the report:

  • One in six carers (16%) reported that children, for whom they had parental responsibility, experienced harm because of someone else’s drinking.
  • One in every two people (51%) reported experiencing harm due to strangers’ drinking in the past 12 months.
  • Two in every five people (44%) reported experiencing negative consequences due to the drinking of people they know.
  • Three in every five people (61%) reported having a known heavy drinker in their life.
  • One in seven workers (14%) reported work-related problems due to co-workers’ drinking.
  • The total estimated cost of AH20 as assessed in this survey was €872.75 million.

The costs estimated in this study are the tangible costs of harm to others. The survey results did not estimate the intangible cost (fear, pain, suffering, lost quality of life) of alcohol’s harm to others, but these are clearly substantial.

Harms that are prominent throughout the report include: feeling unsafe, being harassed or insulted verbally, physical harassment, stress, having less money for household expenses, sleep disturbances, being a passenger with a drunk driver, ruined belongings and having to leave home due for safety.

Children are particularly vulnerable to harm from other people’s drinking, be it within the family, among family members or in the wider community in which they live. Overall, one in six carers (16%) reported that children, for whom they had parental responsibility, experienced harm because of someone else’s drinking.

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