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Funding cut for National Drugs Strategy while use of crack cocaine increases – Ó Snodaigh

18 November, 2008 - by Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD

Sinn Féin Justice and Community Safety Spokesperson Aengus Ó Snodaigh TD, speaking in the Dáil today, criticised the Government's decision to cut funding for the National Drugs Strategy by 5%. Deputy Ó Snodaigh said this cut will impact detrimentally on the ability of treatment services to deal with new drugs on the scene such as crack cocaine and crystal meth.

He said, "Crack cocaine is much more addictive and much cheaper than powder cocaine. There has been a 500% increase in people presenting for treatment for crack cocaine in Crumlin and I have no doubt similar increases are replicated elsewhere. Additional monies are required to tackle this but the Government has actually cut funding.

"Is the Minister concerned, in the absence of a required boost in funding and given the insupportable decision to cut funding instead, that treatment services will not be able to respond to new drugs on the scene such as crack cocaine and crystal meth. Heroin remains a problem while cocaine has become a major problem and current funding is too insufficient to deal with these never mind the new emerging needs." ENDS

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