Staying Safe This St. Patricks Day

Photo of author

( — March 12, 2015) Franklin, TENNESSEE –Ann Niemann Editor in Chief of The Desert Shamrock recently wrote an article about the fight against human trafficking in Arizona.

“The numbers are staggering in our own backyard.  The stories are shocking, each one tied to the heart-wrenching plight of a victim” Ann says.

Yet she goes on to tell us there is hope. 

Brian Steele is an Irish American and the executive director and pastor of the Phoenix Dream Center. This group creates rescue teams to locate and free young women, usually underage, caught in the burgeoning sex trade.  It’s a live-in facility with security cameras for protection, working with a variety of local and federal government agencies and the private sector to make a huge impact one life at a time.

St Patricks Day is around the corner and as an Irish ex-patriot I find myself looking at how we celebrate St Patricks Day in the USA. It has been transformed into an occasion of extreme drunken violence. I can’t help but think of Ann’s recent article, the girls at The Phoenix Dream Center and about Brian Steele. Brian is an honorable Irish hero who is helping hundreds of young women out of violence. And people like Ann and The Desert Shamrock who work tirelessly to highlight the contributions made by Irish-Americans back to society are also heroes. The magazine talks about the myriad of Irish cultural activities and events that go on throughout the year in Arizona and there is a real sense of Irish pride in hard-work and achievement.

And I wonder why we can’t take a leaf out of their book, literally and metaphorically especially during the St. Patricks Day festivities and celebrate in a way that becomes us?

Instead the ancient tradition is honored by a week-long binge of hard-drinking and raucous and oftentimes violent behavior. 

There’s a slew of morbid statistics out there surrounding this “Irish” celebration: 80 percent of all drunk driving deaths on St. Paddy’s involve drivers who are nearly twice the legal limit. The day immediately after the event is one of the primary American business days when employers are on the lookout for absenteeism and hung-over employees, a side effect that costs the US economy an annual $160 billion in worker productivity.

Why has St. Patrick’s Day in America become an event of excessive booze, such widespread inebriation that even moved Michigan’s government to pass a “super drunk” law in 2010. The date is even part of AAA motor club’s “tow-to-go” program, a free and confidential ride home for drunken holiday drivers.

And why, year after year are most women so heedless to the fact that there are such grave dangers associated to such excessive drinking that leaves a person blotto?

In the fall 2014 study conducted by The Ottawa Hospital Sexual Assault and Partner Abuse Care Program (SAPACP), found that of 204 new cases of sexual assault reported to The Ottawa Hospital’s SAPACP in 2013, 25% of these occurred at festivals, parties and other group events, known as mass gatherings. It also found that 90% of victims consumed alcohol at mass gatherings – compared to 60% in other settings.

The celebration of Irish pride in what has now become this international drinking phenomenon is classed as a “mass gathering” and the possibility of sexual assault and acts of sexual violence goes up exponentially.

The research showed that approximately 63% of victims reported being unconscious during their assault in the mass gathering group, compared with 39% in the control group.

Approximately 57% of victims suspected that they were drugged during their assault in the mass gathering group, compared with 39% in the control group. And the assailant was known to the victim in only 33% of patients presenting after mass gatherings, compared with over 60% in the control group.

These are frightening facts because these statistics describe a typical scene from any St. Patricks Day celebration in terms of the amount of alcohol being consumed by women which renders them completely inebriated and incapacitated. 

As we enter the final countdown to St. Patricks Day Weekend, it is important that we keep the dangers of over-drinking in mind and be vigilant on how this plays a role in violence against women. There are definite and undeniable risk factors associated with consuming too much alcohol at mass gatherings and many sexual assault incidents go unreported each and every year. And sexual assault changes a person for life, as I am sure the women at The Phoenix Dream Center would confirm all too well.


About Dúch Press Release Co.

Duch Press Release Co. is an Internet Marketing Service that caters to Ireland-themed businesses and companies that are interested in growing their global market. Are you struggling to know what to do when it comes to Internet and Mobile Marketing ? Have you had a really bad experience with an SEO Expert that turned out to be a fraud Fed up with all the emails and telephone calls from India offering SEO Services? Dúch Press Release Co. offers a a free and no pressure consultation. We are a down to earth no nonsense firm and we are here to help you.

Dúch Press Release Co.

Suite 130-06
Franklin, TENNESSEE United States 37067-8231

866 977 4188