Home > In brief.

Pike, Brigid (2005) In brief. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 16, Winter 2005, p. 20.

PDF (Drugnet Ireland, issue 15) - Published Version

 In March/April 2005 the Health and Safety Authority conducted an Inspection Programme in Accident and Emergency Units in selected Irish hospitals. The incidence of violence faced by A&E workers in contact with people in distress, including those suffering from alcohol or substance abuse, was found to be high. This finding was the subject of a Private Member's Motion in Dáil Éireann on 10/11 May 2005. www.hsa.iewww.oireachtas.ie

 On 3 May 2005 the Special Residential Services Board published a report on research into the impact of placement in special-care-unit settings on the ‘well-being’ of young people and their families. The majority of young people placed in the special-care units had a history of entrenched family difficulties and consequent social and emotional problems placing them ‘at risk’, which covered a wide range of behaviour and social and emotional circumstances including drug use and misuse. The report indicates that the approach in special care is having a positive impact on children.

In May 2005 The Children’s Court: A Children’s Rights Audit, based on a study of almost 1,000 cases in Children’s Courts in Dublin, Cork, Limerick and Waterford, was published. The report, by Dr Ursula Kilkelly of the Faculty of Law, University College Cork, concluded that in many cases the courts do not appear to appreciate the complexity of the issues facing the child, including substance abuse and alcohol and drug addiction, and that detention is being increasingly used because of a lack of support and early intervention for young offenders.

In May 2005 the World Health Organization (WHO) released a Status Paper on Prisons, Drugs and Harm Reduction. The paper summarises the evidence for actions that will reduce the health-related harm associated with drug dependence, indicating that harm reduction measures can be safely introduced into prisons, and that such measures help prevent the transmission of HIV/AIDS. www.euro.who.int/

On 14 June 2005 Guidelines regarding drug dealing on or in the vicinity of licensed premises were launched. Drawn up by An Garda Síochána, members of the licensed trade and the Department of Health and Children, this publication was an initiative under the National Drugs Strategy (Action 27).

At its 16–17 June 2005 meeting (10255/05 CONCL 2), the European Council approved the EU Drugs Action Plan (2005–2008). Noting with deep concern the increase in the incidence of HIV/AIDS in the member states, in neighbouring countries and worldwide, the Council recalled the importance of active co-operation between member states and the European Commission to, among other things, improve access for intravenous drug users to prevention, dependency treatment and harm reduction services. https://www.consilium.europa.eu/uedocs/cmsUpload/85349.pdf

In June 2005 UNAIDS released a policy position paper entitled Intensifying HIV Prevention. Regarding preventing transmission of HIV through injecting drug use, the policy calls for a comprehensive, integrated and effective system of measures including the full range of treatment options, the implementation of harm reduction measures, voluntary confidential HIV counselling and testing, prevention of sexual transmission of HIV among drug users, and access to primary healthcare and to antiretroviral therapy. Such an approach is to be based on promoting, protecting and respecting the human rights of drug users. www.unaids.org/

On 1 July 2005 the commencement order for the Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act 2005 was signed. The Act comes into force on 1 September 2005. The provisions for testing employees for use of intoxicants, including alcohol and/or drugs, will not come into force until the Health and Safety Authority has consulted the Social Partners and other interested groups. The regulations governing testing will bring in the requirement in safety-critical situations and then only on a sectoral basis. www.hsa.ie

On 22 July 2005 the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) launched a new strategy entitled Citizen Child. The strategy sets out five targets in response to what are identified as the key changes and challenges in Irish society impacting on childhood, including alcohol and drug misuse owing to growing social isolation, family dysfunction and personal emotional and psychological difficulties. www.ispcc.ie

On 25 July 2005 the third Annual Government Progress Report on the Implementation of the Programme for Government was published. It reports on drug-related measures under four headings: Building an Inclusive Society, Crime, Tackling Drug Abuse, and Regenerating Disadvantaged Communities. www.taoiseach.gov.ie

In July 2005 Eurobarometer 63, the most recent issue in a series reporting on a twice-yearly survey of public opinion in the European Union, for which the field work was conducted in May/June 2005, was published. Asked to select the three actions that the EU should follow, in order of priority, from a list of 16 possible actions, the aggregate response from the 25 member states showed that ‘fighting organised crime and drug trafficking’ was ranked fourth, after ‘fighting unemployment’, ‘fighting poverty and social exclusion’ and ‘maintaining peace and security in Europe’. UK respondents ranked ‘fighting organised crime and drug trafficking’ as the top priority for action; respondents in Ireland, Cyprus and Estonia ranked it second, after ‘fighting poverty and social exclusion’. The Irish ranking shows a change from the results reported in Eurobarometer 62, for which the field work was conducted in October/November 2004. On that occasion Irish respondents ranked ‘fighting organised crime and drug trafficking’ as the top priority for action, just ahead of ‘fighting poverty and social exclusion’. http://ec.europa.eu/public_opinion/archives/eb/eb63/eb63_en.htm


Item Type
Publication Type
International, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
Substances (not alcohol/tobacco)
Issue Title
Issue 15, Autumn 2005
July 2005
Page Range
p. 20
Health Research Board
Issue 16, Winter 2005
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

Repository Staff Only: item control page