/R E P E A T -- Experts add up real cost of alcohol/

TORONTO, May 17, 2016 /CNW/ -  The Working Group for Responsible Alcohol Retailing will hold a one-day public forum to build awareness about alcohol-related harm and the most effective policies to reduce it.


Wednesday, May 18, 2016


9 a.m. – 4 p.m.


Oakham House (Ryerson University), Tecumseh Auditorium, 63 Gould Street, Toronto


Alcohol use carries many associated costs in terms of health care, social impacts, law enforcement and lost productivity. These costs vastly exceed government revenues generated from alcohol sales.

In light of this, some 125 public health professionals, academic researchers, alcohol control advocates, union members and other stakeholders will participate in this day-long event. It will promote an evidence-informed Ontario alcohol strategy that gives first priority to community well‑being and safety.

Speakers include:

  • The Honourable Dipka Damerla, Ontario Associate Minister of Health and Long-Term Care
  • Ann Dowsett Johnston, author and journalist, author of Drink: The Intimate Relationship Between Women and Alcohol
  • Anne Leonard, Executive Director, Arrive Alive DRIVE SOBER
  • Dr. Hazel Lynn, Medical Officer of Health, Grey Bruce Health Unit
  • Dr. Robert Mann, Senior Scientist, Institute for Mental Health Policy Research, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
  • Dr. Lynn Anne Mulrooney, Senior Policy Analyst, Registered Nurses' Association of Ontario
  • Andrew Murie, CEO, MADD Canada
  • Dr. Robert Schwartz, Principal Investigator and Executive Director, Ontario Tobacco Research Unit
  • Dr. Lisa Simon, Associate Medical Officer of Health, Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit
  • Brenda Stankiewicz, Public Health Nurse, Sudbury and District Health Unit
  • Dr. Tim Stockwell, Director, Centre for Addiction Research of British Columbia
  • Dr. Robert Strang, Chief Public Health Officer, Nova Scotia
  • Pegeen Walsh, Executive Director, Ontario Public Health Association

There will be opportunities for the media to speak with these forum presenters.

Megan Park, chair of the alcohol forum planning committee for the Working Group for Responsible Alcohol Retailing, said the conference was timely and necessary.

"The Ontario government has allowed alcohol to become more widely available without giving much thought to alcohol's social and economic impacts. An honest, evidence‑informed discussion on ways to diminish these impacts on people and communities is urgently needed."

SOURCE The Working Group for Responsible Alcohol Retailing

For further information: Timothy Humphries, A/Bilingual Communications Officer, 416-432-6907

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