The World Health Organisation is being slammed by online trolls after warning that women of childbearing age should be encouraged to avoid drinking alcohol, as it describes the harm that alcohol can do and urges countries to raise awareness as means of prevention…
— Irish Examiner (@irishexaminer) June 17, 2021
In the first draft, WHO states that ‘appropriate attention’ must be paid to preventing those of childbearing age from drinking, as well as pregnant women and children. It suggests that alcohol can be responsible for reduced mental health, damaged relationships, violence, and an increase in disease.
‘One of the most dramatic manifestations of harm to persons other than drinkers is pre-natal alcohol exposure and the development of foetal alcohol spectrum disorders,’ it says. Symptoms listed include learning and behavioural issues, poor growth, and distinct facial features.
The plan even suggested a ‘world no alcohol day/week’ to raise awareness globally. Taking all of this new information together, users on Twitter are reacting strongly, with one user writing: ‘Stop only valuing women for their ability to reproduce PLS (sic)’.
One woman wrote, ‘Wow. While I agree that children and pregnant women should not drink, but to BAN women of childbearing age from drinking? Never heard anything so sexist! Good luck with that @WHO’.
"This is classic World Health Organisation idiocy… The idea that it is unsafe for women of childbearing age to drink any alcohol is unscientific and absurd"
— IEA (@iealondon) June 17, 2021
Another chipped in on the debate, writing: ‘How about women of childbearing age make up their own minds on what they do with their bodies?’ Nonetheless, there were some people who thought the uproar was a bit too far.