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Health

Alcohol advertising needs to be restricted to protect young people

Profits from alcohol advertising should take a back seat to the health of youth

The National Youth Council of Ireland are launching a unique report tomorrow (Tuesday June 9th) at 12pm entitled “Get ‘em Young – Mapping young people’s exposure to alcohol marketing in Ireland.” The report will be launched in Buswells Hotel by Senator Joe O’Toole and will show the prevalence of alcohol marketing across the country and its impact on young people.

NYCI is committed to influencing policy in the area of youth health. For 2010 are focusing on two issues including:

*Medical Cards

*Mental Health Needs of Young People

3.1 - Medical Cards

What do we want to achieve?

The doubling of the income threshold limits for the full medical card for parents of children under 6 and an extension of this to all families with children under 18 years.

Why?

Many low income families do not have access to a medical card.

The most significant factor affecting health is socio-economic status. This inequality is reflected in the long waiting lists for public hospital care and in the uncovered costs of primary health care for the vast majority of Irish children and young people. This is a growing problem with greater numbers of families struggling to meet medical costs because the income limits are so low despite a low household income.

How?

Implement the commitment in the Programme for Government to double the income threshold limits for the full medical card for the parents of children under 6 and extend this to include all families with children under 18 years.

3.2 - Mental Health Needs of Young People

What do we want to achieve?

The implementation of the “Reach Out” Strategy to promote positive mental health and address suicide amongst young people.

Why?

Ireland currently has the 7th highest rate of youth suicide in the EU and despite increased demands on the health service in recent years, the level of funding available for mental health has decreased.

How?

A funding increase for the National Office for Suicide Prevention (NOSP) in order to protect the welfare of young people.

Progress

There has been no movement on doubling of the income threshold limits for the full medical card for the parents of children under 6 and an extension to all families with children under 18 years.

However, in 2009 the NOSP did receive additional funding to provide mental health awareness programmes for young people and provide training for those working with young people at risk of suicide.

What can I do?

As an organisation: Lobby Government

As an Individual: Support us by engaging in debate with your local TD on the importance of these issues.

Links

NYCI's policy position paper on health

NYCI's National Youth Health Programme

NYCI pre-budget submission 2010

 

National Office of Suicide Prevention