by Alan Jacques
That’s the view of Sinn Féin comhairleoir Séighin Ó Ceallaigh who believes that raising alcohol prices will deny low income earners who drink responsibly, the choice to consume alcohol responsibly.
“Those who can afford to, can still binge drink and damage their health, and people who are addicted to alcohol will pay any price for it,” he claimed.
Instead, the City East councillor is recommending an increase in excise duty to raise taxes and not put money into the pockets of alcohol producing companies. Funds raised could go towards increasing support for people who suffer with alcohol addiction, the homeless and domestic abuse services.
“Some people will simply not be able to afford to have a few drinks, and others will be able to binge drink regularly, it doesn’t make sense. What this government are doing is putting another cost on the low earners of Ireland, who have every right to drink responsibly if they choose to do so. You won’t see these minimum charges affecting high earners, just like the recent Property and Water Taxes.
“Fine Gael and Labour seem to be determined to make life harder for ordinary people, “repeatedly hitting them with tax after tax.
“Minimum pricing is just another charge that will do little to address the problem, and generate money which will not be used to resolve the issue,” he concluded.