The annual “Play Safe” in Glasgow campaign launches tomorrow (Friday, November 23) with advice from an accident and emergency consultant about how not to end up as a patient in his department.
Dr Phil Munro works at the Southern General Hospital, he said: “We tend to get an upsurge in limb injuries at this time of year, such as broken ankles and wrists, many as a result of people becoming overly intoxicated.
“Having one too many to drink when pavements tend to be icy and your balance is affected is not a good idea, neither is heading for the ice-rink at George Square.
“If someone is under the influence of alcohol, they may not even release how bad a break or head knock they may have suffered, and this could delay treatment with possible consequences.”
“Play Safe” is led by the City Centre Alcohol Action Group (CCAAG) and aimed at 18-30 years.
And this year’s campaign is also being flagged up during tomorrow’s early morning rush hour at Central Station.
NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde staff and other partners are joining commuters and handing out goody bags with information about safer socialising, safer drinking and safer transport home.
The idea behind “Play Safe” is to encourage young people to stay as safe as possible by planning ahead in terms of drinking safely, looking out for each other and arranging how to get home.
Willie Caie, chair of CCAAG, said: “The Alcohol Action Group runs the ‘Play Safe’ campaign as a way of getting people to focus on their own safety when out and about in Glasgow this Festive Season.
“Our city is a safe and friendly place to visit but it can become even safer if people this Christmas focus on a few simple tips to help themselves. Safer Drinking, Safer Socialising and SafeTravel can all be achieved by following a few simple steps which are outlined in the Play Safe website.”
The campaign also focuses on survival tips for office parties, with alcohol awareness sessions being offered throughout the campaign period by a sessional worker.
They are offering free, interactive alcohol awareness workshops at workplaces lasting a minimum of an hour and for a maximum of 20 people, with everyone taking part receiving a Play Safe goody bag.
Nikki Boyle, Health Improvement Practitioner Specialist (Alcohol), NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, said:
“We want people to enjoy themselves when they come into Glasgow city centre for a night out.
“It’s one of the best cities in the UK for people to enjoy themselves, with a wide range of pubs, clubs and restaurants.
“Our message to everyone heading for Glasgow’s nightlife is to ‘play safe’ when it comes to drinking, socialising and travelling home.”
The campaign advice chimes with a call to reduce alcohol consumption and the number of outlets highlighted in a major report issued earlier this year by Dr Linda de Caestecker, NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde’s Director of Public Health.
In it Dr de Caestecker wrote: “One of the key challenges highlighted in the report is the sheer scale of the problems related to alcohol misuse and its devastating impact on our health and communities.
“It shows the need for concerted action to reduce alcohol consumption and outlines a number of proposed actions including restricting the availability of alcohol by reducing the number of places where alcohol is sold and encouraging GPs to ask patients about their drinking habits.
A groundbreaking new joint alcohol policy has also been agreed between Scotland’s three largest public sector organisations, the health board, Glasgow City Council and Strathclyde Police.
The ambitious action plan includes reducing alcohol related crime, violence and disorder; a reduction in alcohol related deaths and admissions; and promote responsible alcohol consumption amongst the combined workforce of more than 100,000 employees.
Councillor Jim Coleman, Glasgow City Council, added: "We've absolutely no desire to dampen the festive spirit but people must be made aware of the impact of excessive drinking.
"Over indulgence in alcohol can lead to people severely compromising the well-being of themselves and those around them.
"Drunkenness can fuel anything from an accidental fall to violent disorder and it all adds up to unnecessary strain on the public services who have to respond.
"Glasgow is a great place for a night out and we want people to feel safe and secure when here to enjoy themselves.
"People drinking responsibly would go a long way to making that happen."
Notes to Editors:
The Play Safe campaign was originally launched in December 2004. This year’s campaign is bigger with more information available and an informative website www.playsafeinglasgow.com
In Glasgow there are more than 400 licensed premises including around 360 pubs and 45 nightclubs. Approximately 150,000 people come to Glasgow city centre each weekend to enjoy themselves.
The City Centre Alcohol Action Group has representatives from: NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde, Glasgow City Council, Strathclyde Police, Greater Glasgow and Clyde Alcohol Action Team, City Centre Task Force, Glasgow Community and Safety Services, ServeWise, Procurator Fiscal Office, Scottish Licensed Trade Association, Glasgow Council on Alcohol, Glasgow Night Club Forum and British Entertainment and Disco Association Scotland.
The full range of media being used to promote the Play Safe message are –
· Posters across a range of venues within the city centre and west end
· 6 sheet posters at Buchanan Street Bus Station
· Alcohol awareness workshop sessions in city workplaces
· Promotional items distributed through workplaces
· Changing room posters
big issue advertorial
posters in licensed premises washrooms
· Advert in the List
· Posters outside licensed premises
· Subway carriage cards
Telephone box adverts
For more information contact 0141 201 4429.