This week I co-hosted the informal Oireachtas Cross Party Group on Alcohol Harm breakfast briefing on child protection in the context of the Public Health (Alcohol) Bill.
Harmful parental drinking is a key child protection issue. The wide range of harms that are caused to children as a result of parental alcohol misuse is known as ‘Hidden Harm’, as the harm is often not publicly visible. This means these children are often not known to the appropriate services and that they suffer harm in a number of important ways that can impede their physical, emotional and social development.
The briefing shed light on the link between child protection and alcohol misuse, and how national policy can help address this important issue. The Public Health (Alcohol) Bill is legislation designed to tackle Ireland’s harmful relationship with alcohol and reduce the damage that alcohol causes to individuals, families and society, with a particular focus on protecting children and young people from alcohol harm.