Bar staff need to do more to stop people taking part in ‘Neknomination’ according to a local councillor, who was shocked by alleged goings on in a Portadown pub.
DUP Councillor Robert Smith says he watched a video on Facebook filmed in a pub in the Portadown area showing a woman down a concoction of vinegar, three shots, a bottle of WKD and a quarter bottle of wine then ordering three of her friends to do the same.
Mr Smith was concerned this had happened at the bar in full view of bar staff while the young woman downing the drink was being egged on by other people.
He said that while publicans have powers to refuse to serve someone who is intoxicated, they also need to be able to refuse to serve someone alcohol if they think it’s going to be used for Neknomination.
“Young people are playing with fire,” he told the Portadown Times. “People have died from Neknomination.”
Mr Smith first raised the issue during a discussion at Monday’s council meeting about responsible drinking prompted by the launch of the Portman Group’s Alcohol Sponsorship Code.
DUP Councillor Carla Lockhart commented, “It would surprise you to see some of the people who are participating in this behaviour (Neknomination).”
Sinn Fein’s Gemma McKenna who raised the issue of Neknomination with the PCSP said, “Collectively we recognise the seriousness of the problem. A number of successful events with young people have taken place and significant work has been carried out with the Health Trust.
“Not only does Neknomination have a detrimental effect on your health, but also your job prospects if an employer sees a video you’ve posted.”
On the subject of alcohol abuse the DUP’s Gladys McCullough commented, “Alcohol is a drug and should be considered as such. It’s one of the main demands on the National Health Service and one of the main causes of crime in the community.
“Some notice has been taken but I don’t think it’s going far enough.”