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Pike, Brigid (2006) In brief. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 18, Summer 2006, p. 27.

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On 1 February 2006 the Courts Service announced that the Drugs Treatment Court is to be put on a permanent footing and extended on a staged basis to all court areas in the Dublin Metropolitan District. 

On 2 February 2006 Drugs and Doping in Sport: Guidelines for General Practitioners was published by the Irish Sports Council and the Irish College of General Practitioners. /

On 6 February 2006 the Homeless Agency launched Preventing Homelessness: A Comprehensive Preventative Strategy to Prevent Homelessness in Dublin, 2005-2010. The Strategy acknowledges that drug, alcohol, mental health or other personal and health problems may lead individuals into homelessness.

On 13 February 2006 the Customs Service launched its mobile x-ray scanner. Speaking at the launch, Minister Noel Ahern TD said the scanner would assist in the disruption of the flow of drugs into the State.

On 13 February 2006 the SDLP published North South Makes Sense.Under the heading of health and social services, the document proposes ‘shared provision of specialised units and services for young people with drug/alcohol addiction’. In relation to justice and policing, it calls for a North/South Criminal Justice Treaty and an all-Ireland Criminal Assets Bureau, Law Commission and Intelligence Agency.

On 17 February 2006 the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an inter-governmental body whose purpose is the development and promotion of national and international policies to combat money laundering and terrorist financing, published its assessment of the implementation of its anti-money-laundering and counter-terrorist-financing standards in Ireland.  It reported that Ireland has a sound legal framework in place to combat money laundering, although the number of convictions for money laundering is ‘somewhat low’.,3417,en_32250379_32235720_1_1_1_1_1,00.html

In February 2006 the Dublin Simon Tenancy Sustainment Service was announced. Intended to break the cycle of homelessness, the service will prioritise people and families moving out of homelessness into tenancies, as well as working with people who are in established tenancies but who are at high risk of the tenancies breaking down and thus returning to homelessness.

On 7–8 March 2006 the National Roads Authority held a conference on road safety. Three papers were presented relating to driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, including one on ‘Eye Testing for Drugs and Driving’.

On 14 March 2006 the report School Matters – The Report of the Task Force on Student Behaviour in Second Level Schools was published. Two societal factors identified as directly affecting schools and the behaviour of students, and leading in some situations to dysfunctional behaviours in schools, were ‘youth culture’, which includes clothes, hairstyles, sexuality, music, technologies and language ‘and, for some, experimentation with alcohol and drugs’, and ‘lifestyle’, and in particular young people’s patterns of drinking. 

 On 29 March 2006 the Rainbow Project launched a research report Out on your Own, examining the mental health of young same-sex-attracted men in Northern Ireland. The researchers found that 71.6 per cent of respondents had tried drugs or solvents at least once. This finding mirrors international research showing that lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people are more likely to use recreational drugs than heterosexual people.

 In March 2006 the Report of the High Level Group on Traveller Issues was published by the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform. The report summarises the current situation and makes recommendations with regard to the provision of services to Travellers in the areas of accommodation, health, education and employment. The Group noted that in 2005 three local drugs task forces (Bray, Dublin North-East, and South Inner City) were funding projects specifically targeted towards Travellers. It also noted that the National Advisory Committee on Drugs has commissioned an exploratory study of drug use and drug issues among the Traveller community.

 In March 2006 the Department of Justice, Equality and Law Reform undertook a nationwide survey of public attitudes towards crime and law enforcement issues in Ireland. The survey revealed high levels of concern regarding most of the crimes listed, with ‘drug abuse’ being almost universally seen as the most serious problem.

 On 5 April 2006 the Irish Sports Council launched its 2005 Anti-Doping Annual Report. It reports that in 2005, 962 tests were carried out. There were two positive findings, for cannabinoids, one in squash and one in rugby. Sanctions were imposed.

On 18 April 2006 the Task Force on Active Citizenship was announced by the Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern TD. The Task Force is due to report in nine months’ time with recommendations for facilitating and encouraging a greater degree of engagement by citizens in all aspects of life and the growth and development of voluntary organisations as part of a strong civic culture.

On 26 April 2006 the Drugs Awareness Programme, with sponsorship from the Vodafone Ireland Foundation, launched a new mobile phone text-alert service to provide people with urgent advice on the dangers of illicit drugs.

In April 2006 the Irish Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (ISPCC) released its Childline Annual Call Statistics 2005. These figures show that 1,104 (0.94%) calls were on the subject of substance use; 361 (0.31%) on alcohol use; and 240 (0.20%) on smoking.   In the wake of the launch of the statistics, the ISPCC called for the establishment of a new Life Skills Education Programme in primary schools and the introduction of a nationwide parent support programme. It claimed that there is growing evidence that drink and drugs, mobile phone usage, Internet usage, sexual pressures and mental health are major factors for children as young as eleven and twelve.


Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Issue Title
Issue 18, Summer 2006
April 2006
Page Range
p. 27
Health Research Board
Issue 18, Summer 2006
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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