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Pike, Brigid (2005) In brief. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 13, Spring 2005, p. 19.

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In June 2004 the Irish Prison Service (IPS) published its Health Care Standards, including a standard for the provision of clinical services for the assessment, treatment and care of substance misusers. Appendix 6 sets out a methadone treatment programme based on the European Methadone Guidelines. http://www.irishprisons.ie/

On 23 September 2004 a report on a Cross Border Organised Crime Threat Assessment was launched at a seminar in Belfast attended by senior police officers of An Garda Síochána and the PSNI. The report explores eight key areas of criminality, including drugs. One objective of the seminar was to consider the development of a strategic response to the threat from cross-border organised crime. 

On 1 October 2004 the Criminal Justice (Joint Investigation Teams) Act 2004 came into force. Giving effect to an EU Council Framework Decision, the Act provides for the setting up of joint investigation teams by EU member states, including Ireland, for a specific purpose and limited period. The teams will carry out criminal investigations with a cross-border dimension, particularly organised criminal activities such as drug trafficking. http://www.oireachtas.ie/parliament/

On 18 October 2004 Youth suicide prevention: an evidence briefing was launched.

Produced on behalf of the UK and Ireland Public Health Evidence Group, the study identifies key risk areas in need of attention when future prevention programmes are designed, including substance misuse, and the availability of means, such as legal or illegal drugs. 

 On 18 October 2004 the Tallaght West Child Development Initiative (TWCDI) launched a research report, How are our kids? The profile reveals that exposure to crime and anti-social behaviour, including drugs and drug use, is common and that some children’s development is adversely affected by behavioural difficulties including substance abuse. The report discusses possible preventative approaches to addressing the difficulties encountered by the children and their families. email: mailto:info@twcdi.com 

On 25 October 2004 the European Council of Ministers adopted a Framework Decision (2004/757/JHA) laying down minimum provisions on the constituent elements of criminal acts and penalties in the field of illicit drug trafficking. The Decision focuses on the most serious types of drug offence and excludes certain types of behaviour as regards personal consumption as defined by national law.  

On 4–5 November 2004 the European Council agreed the Hague Programme (13993/04 LIMITE JAI 408). Succeeding the Tampere Programme, this new 5-year programme aims to reinforce the EU area of freedom, security and justice by 2010. The EU Drugs Strategy 2005–2012 will form part of the Hague Programme.

On 8 November 2004 a Ministerial Meeting of the British–Irish Council reviewed the work programme to date of the Misuse of Drugs Sectoral Group and agreed future activities. Guernsey will lead discussions on interventions with young people, including formal and informal education projects.  Scotland will take the lead on children of drug misusing parents, while Wales offered to lead on discussions on undertaking confidential enquiries into drug-related deaths.  http://www.britishirishcouncil.org/

On 18 November 2004 a report Prison needle exchange: lessons from a comprehensive review of international evidence and experience was launched at MQI on Merchants Quay in Dublin. Co-authored by Rick Lines, Executive Director of the Irish Penal Reform Trust (IPRT), and published by the Montreal-based Canadian HIV/AIDS Legal Network, the report concludes that the controlled provision of sterile syringes in prisons, with programmes now operating in over 50 prisons in six countries, is both safe and effective. http://www.iprt.ie/

In November 2004 the National Economic and Social Forum (NESF) launched its Fourth Periodic Report, evaluating follow-up action by government departments on NESF reports completed during 2001–2003. The report outlines progress in relation to the report (No 22) on the reintegration of prisoners, including recommendations relating to treatment for prisoners experiencing substance or alcohol abuse problems, and to the report (No 24) on early school leavers, including the prevention of drug misuse.

On 15 December 2004 the European Parliament called on the European Council to adopt a new approach to the issue of controlled drugs, ‘a genuine European policy on fighting drugs’. See Proposal for a European Parliament Recommendation to the Council on the European Strategy on Fighting Drugs (2005–2012). Rapporteur: Giusto Catania. (A6-0067/2004 Final).

On 1 January 2005 the Health Service Executive (HSE) was established under the Health Act 2004. Replacing the health boards, the HSE is responsible for managing the health service as a single national entity. This structural change will have an impact on the provision of drug-related services, including implementation of the 28 actions in the National Drugs Strategy for which responsibility is wholly or partly assigned to the health boards. 

On 17 January 2005 the report Darkness on the edge of town: an exploratory study of heroin misuse in Athlone and Portlaoise was launched. Based on interviews with drug service providers, service users and families connected with heroin, the report seeks to establish the prevalence of heroin use in the two towns, and recommends the provision of community-based and client-centred services, including outreach services. 

In January 2005 the Joint Committee on Arts, Sport, Tourism, Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs published its report Volunteers and volunteering in Ireland. The report calls for new sources of funding for volunteering to be explored, including the ring-fencing of Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) funds for projects related to communities affected by the abuse of drugs and by organised crime. http://www.oireachtas.ie


Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, International, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Issue Title
Issue 13, Spring 2005
January 2005
Page Range
p. 19
Health Research Board
Issue 13, Spring 2005
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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