Ó Ríordáin calls for dedicated drugs minister
Labour Senator Aodhán Ó Ríordáin has joined calls for the government to appoint a dedicated Drugs Minister this week.
“The drugs crisis that is affecting every corner of this country needs a dedicated drugs minister to tackle it.
“I was proud as Drugs Minister in the last government to be able to pursue new policies and to see them get cabinet approval – most notably the adoption of the Medically Supervised Injecting Rooms as part of a harm reduction approach.
“We also need an adult conversation about pursuing the Portuguese model which invests heavily in treatment rather than wasting resources on a criminal justice approach.
“In 2013 679 people died in Ireland as a result of drug and alcohol related causes. Only last month two men died from overdoses on the streets of our capital city with hardly any public comment.
“Only a dedicated minister with an open-minded approach can begin to tackle this menace. He or she will receive the Labour Party’s full support if these progressive policies are followed.”