Ireland is set to decriminalize small amounts of drugs for personal use including cannabis, heroin and cocaine according to the country’s drug minister.
Aodhán Ó Ríordáin is Ireland’s chief of Ireland’s National Drugs Strategy, made the announcement on Monday while giving a speech to the London School of Economics. He stated that by next year their would be specially designed ‘injection rooms’ where drug users would be able to go and use their personal drugs. The rooms will begin to open in Dublin next year, followed by Cork, Galway and Limerick.
All this comes from a “radical cultural shift” in the approach needed to combat drug addiction. Aodháan stated “I am firmly of the view that there needs to be a cultural shift in how we regard substance misuse if we are to break this cycle and make a serious attempt to tackle drug and alcohol addiction.”
This address follows the wake of a leaked report from the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime that had appeared to call for decriminilisation of drugs on public health and human rights grounds. In the leaked report it states “The briefing paper argues that criminalising drug use increases death rates among addicts and has led to the jailing of millions of people for non-violent offences.”
Well let’s hope that with these radically changing views on the drug crimes that we can move forward in the hopes that they are able to reduce drug consumption but also crime rates and deaths of these users.