Senator calls on nightclubs to provide plastic lids for drinks to avoid spiking
Drink spiking has been on the rise in the past few months.
A Fine Gael senator has called for pubs and nightclubs to provide lids for the drinks they serve in order to combat rising levels of drink spiking.
Longford Senator Micheál Carrigy made the proposition on Tuesday (19 April).
“Drink spiking is an extremely dangerous practice and unfortunately seems to be on the rise, with too many young people, mainly women, speaking of their experiences of this all over the country of late," Carrigy said.
“I want to see pubs and clubs making lids available for the drinks served in their premises to help protect people from the dangerous practice of spiking.
“I am pleased to say this proposal has received a positive response so far from the Vintners Federation of Ireland, and they seem open to examining the idea.
“I recently brought Minister for Justice Helen McEntee to meet with both Longford Women’s Link, a domestic violence group, and Comhairle na nÓg, to discuss issues of safety for women and young people."
Gender-based violence is one area that McEntee is looking to tackle, taking a zero-tolerance approach to the act.
“Several of the groups we met proposed the introduction of lids for glasses in nightclubs or pubs. I believe this is very doable.
"Lids are provided for drinks in shops and cafes, so it can be done in pubs and clubs also."
Drink spiking is classified as poisoning, and if convicted, can lead to a three-year prison sentence.
Senator Carrigy said he looked forward to working with the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) on the matter.
In a statement to JOE, Padraig Cribben, Chief Executive of the VHI, said: "We have had no official interaction with Senator Carrigy on this issue.
"We are always prepared to consider any proposal that enhances safety for customers but these decisions must be made in a balanced way taking cognisance of all relevant details."
Drink spiking has become a major topic of concern for club goers, with UCD Students Union publishing a warning about the practice on their social media earlier in the school year.
If you believe you have been spiked while on a night out, the HSE has issued the following advice.
Tell someone you trust.
This could be a friend or relative, the manager of the establishment, security, a healthcare professional, or the Gardaí.
Keep your drink.
If you haven't finished your drink, give it to someone you trust until it can be given to Gardaí. This could be used as evidence in future.
Heading to the emergency department.
If you feel drowsy, have started vomiting, or are beginning to see hallucinations, travel to an ED immediately with a friend.
Contact the Gardaí.
If you aren't feeling any severe symptoms but believe you have been spiked, contact the Gardaí. Reporting the event as soon as possible will assist in their investigation. You will need to have your blood or urine tested to confirm the spiking as soon as possible.
Return home and rest, and ask a friend to stay with you until the drugs have left your system. This is in case your symptoms worsen over time.