the Fight against Drugs
The drugs crisis is now one of the major challenges facing Irish society.
Radical action is necessary to fight the spread of drugs addiction,
overdoses, anti-social crime, associated high rates of imprisonment and an
increase in HIV and AIDS related illnesses and deaths. The scale of the
drugs problem today is a direct result of the failure to introduce the
measures necessary to tackle the problem.
Sinn Fein has a track record of campaigning against drug abuse. In October
1996 Sinn Fein launched a comprehensive set of recommendations to tackle
the drugs problem. Although some of these proposals were implemented by the
government much more needs to be done.
- Immediate treatment for addicts. Nobody should have to wait for
treatment. Locally based treatment facilities established in consultation
with the community are essential.
- Community drug teams, involving local GPs, social workers, voluntary and
community agencies should be established in areas affected by the problem.
- A co-ordinated approach by all the relevant state agencies is needed to
target the major drug dealers and seize their assets
- Local communities have a central role to play in tackling the drugs problem
- Local authorities should evict drug dealers and local people must be
given a greater say in how their estates are managed
- An end to Garda harassment of anti-drug activists. The Gardaí must be
made accountable to the community. Changes in Garda management practices
are necessary to facilitate this
- We recommend the establishment of a national forum with statutory funding
to draw up a comprehensive response to the drugs crisis