Fianna Fail Senator Averil Power has called on Diageo to cover the financial cost of the additional public services needed to manage Arthur’s Day. These costs include the extra gardaí required to police the event and the major clean-up operation the following day.

According to the North Dublin Senator, the taxpayer should not have to cover the costs associated with a strictly commercial event from which Diageo will enjoy major profits.

Senator Power said, “Diageo has made a great success of Arthur’s Day. Of course, there are positive aspects to this, including the opportunities it offers to enjoy live music. However, the event also puts a real strain on public services. Extra gardaí are required on the streets, A&E admissions increase and the council has to mount a major clean-up operation the next morning. At a time of shrinking budgets at all levels of Government, diverting resources to Arthur’s Day means that they are not available at other times of the year.

“This summer Diageo posted profits of €4 billion for the year. It derives significant commercial return from Arthur’s Day, while it is left to the taxpayer to pick up the tab for all the public costs associated with it. This is neither fair nor sustainable. I am asking Diageo to do their part and cover the security and clean-up costs of its event. Concert promoters and sporting bodies make a contribution to the extra policing costs associated with major events. I see no reason why Diageo should not do the same for Arthurs Day.”