Belfast Telegraph

Parents urged to cut down on drinking over Christmas

By Donna Deeney

Parents who get drunk in front of their children are being targeted in a campaign aimed at people across the north west who drink in the home.

With the countdown to Christmas under way, the More Cheer, Less Beer campaign postcards will be distributed to off-sales and organisations across Londonderry to highlight the potential dangers associated with consuming alcohol at home over the festive period.

The message will appear on billboards on both sides of the city over the Christmas period in a bid to reach as many parents as possible.

Backed by the Derry District Policing Partnership (DPP), the Divert Project campaigns at times of the year when alcohol use is increased to promote safe and responsible behaviour.

Its Hidden Harm project works with children aged 4-17 years who are living with the effects of parental drug and/or alcohol misuse.

One of the main messages depicted in the campaign is ‘Merry Christmas — For Who?’

“We hope this thought-provoking message will remind parents and families that children are the focal point of Christmas and that alcohol can create sad memories of what is supposed to be a festive time,” said a spokesman.

“The message to all families is to be mindful of how alcohol is used in the home and to spare a thought for the impact that too much alcohol may have on children.”

Councillor Elisha McCallion, chair of the Derry Community Safety Partnership, added: “We are asking parents to be mindful of the impact alcohol can have in the home and the dangers associated with drinking too much.”

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