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Senator Devine welcomes passing of committee stage of Public Health (Alcohol) Bill, but hopes issues raised will be addressed without delay in report stage

9 November, 2017 - by Máire Devine

Sinn Féin Seanad Spokesperson on health Máire Devine has expressed has welcomed the passing of the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill through committee stage late last night.

The Bill was first introduced in the Seanad two years ago and Senator Devine stated her concerns regarding filibustering by many Senators.

Senator Devine said;

“Committee stage of this Bill took seven hours, and yet most major issues were kicked to touch for report stage. 

"I was delighted that a Sinn Féin amendment which puts child protection at the front and center of this Bill was agreed to.

"However, most Senators spent their time talking generally on the Bill, without addressing the amendments that were tabled to tackle legitimate concerns.

"For example, we made many recommendations regarding sports sponsorship, internet advertising and collection of data from patients who present to hospitals with alcohol related health issues to be recorded and collated.

"We believe that these amendments to would strengthen the positive impact on health of this Bill, and we look forward to engaging with Minister Harris on these.

"There is a real challenge now for the Seanad to get its act together and have the tough discussions promptly and thoroughly to work through these amendments and ultimately enact this vital piece of health legislation before Christmas”

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