Drinkaware statement on proposed change to licensing laws 

Drinkaware, the leading charity working to prevent and reduce alcohol misuse, has today highlighted that any proposed change to the licensing laws which would extend opening hours should be accompanied by increased public awareness of the risks of drinking and its associated harms, as well as knowledge and measures to further support no alcohol alternatives as part of the night-time economy, including café culture.  

Drinkaware’s annual research barometer 2022 shows that the vast majority of the adult population (97%) is unaware of the HSE low-risk weekly alcohol guidelines.  

In light of the proposal to extend the sale of alcohol to 5am, education on what constitutes excessive or binge drinking, alcohol processing times in the body and drink driving the morning after a night out will be essential. 

A broader view of the possible unintended, as well as intended consequences of this legislative change is paramount if public knowledge of the potential risks and harms from drinking is to be supported in a new environment.  

Drinkaware believes it is imperative that comprehensive efforts are made to co-ordinate and deliver this information in parallel with the proposed legislative change. Drinkaware is committed to playing its part through communication to consumers that is evidence-based and rooted in best practice for public health.