The Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Justice Niall Collins has said the Government needs to wake up and act on the drugs crisis plaguing Dublin. It comes as an image showing drug users “shooting up” outside the Oireachtas offices in Leinster House 2000 was captured at the end of last week. The three individuals were injecting themselves in broad daylight, in plain view of TDs and Senators, highlighting just how bad the drug situation in Dublin has become.
Deputy Collins, who has been consistently drawing attention to the crisis in the city commented, “The Government is completely ignoring this problem. I am being contacted by concerned members of the public, despairing at the fact that illegal drug use is now an open activity in large parts of the city centre. I have been critical of the Government’s total inaction on anti-social behaviour but like with so much else in their programme, the Government is not interested in bad news – only in PR telling us how great everything is.”
“Now that illegal drug taking has landed on their doorstep, perhaps Fine Gael and Labour ministers might open their eyes and finally be convinced that there is actually a problem. What we need to see now is action.
“A series of cuts to Garda numbers, particularly in Dublin, has exacerbated the situation. Recent figures from the Department of Justice reveal that Garda numbers have been slashed in every Garda station in Dublin city since 2012, except at Donnybrook. The Gardaí are to be commended for doing all they can with the constrained resources they currently have. However, the political will needs to be present if the current degradation of our capital city is to stop.
“At this point I believe the Garda Commissioner and the Justice Minister should come before the Oireachtas Joint Committee on Justice to seriously engage with the issue. They need to outline a strategy to improve policing in Dublin. International media have already picked up on the lamentable situation in the city with Bloomberg recently publishing an article entitled “Coke-Selling Beggars and Punch-Ups Plague Downtown Dublin”. The question must be asked, how bad does it need to get before this Government actually does something to stop the rot?”