Home > Southern Regional Drugs Task Force: strategic plan 2005-2008

Reynolds, Siobhan (2006) Southern Regional Drugs Task Force: strategic plan 2005-2008. Drugnet Ireland, Issue 19, Autumn 2006, p. 12.

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The Southern Regional Drugs Task Force (SRDTF) was established in 2003 by the National Drugs Strategy Team.

The SRDTF recently published its Strategic Plan1 to address drug and alcohol misuse in Cork and Kerry. The Plan is the result of extensive research and consultation with a range of individuals and organisations to determine the nature and extent of the problem of drug and alcohol misuse in Cork and Kerry.

The background research carried out in the preparation of this Plan included a detailed profile of the SRDTF. Current drug- and alcohol-related services, the uptake of services and gaps in service provision were highlighted.  A study by Dr Tim Jackson, Smoking Alcohol and Drug Use in Cork and Kerry (2004), the repeat of a 1999 study, was used for comparative purposes. 

The research and consultation process revealed that:

·       Drug and alcohol use had increased across all types of drugs in the region between 1996 and 2004.

·        Cannabis use had significantly increased and was the most popular illicit drug of choice.

·        The increase in illicit drug use was most pronounced in the 15–19 and 20–24-year age groups. 

·       Societal tolerance of high alcohol and illicit drug use had significantly increased. 

·       Addiction was a feature for many prisoners and ex-prisoners, as well as for their immediate families. 

·       There was a specific illicit drug trade aimed directly at non-nationals.

·       The number of people accessing treatment for both drug and alcohol misuse had increased by 300% since 1999. 

·       The key/link worker approach was identified as offering flexibility in treatment and rehabilitation, but no such resource exists in the region.

Some of the key recommendations of the Strategic Plan are:

·         The development of partnership between state and voluntary sectors in the provision of treatment for drug and alcohol misuse.

·         The development of the role of key/link worker which will ensure continuity between each phase of treatment.  These workers can play a significant role in ensuring that the pathway to rehabilitation is made accessible to all clients.

·         That the needs of families affected by drug and alcohol misuse must be addressed in order that rehabilitation can take place within the family unit.

·         The level of treatment service provision should reflect the level of drug and alcohol misuse.

·         Recognition of the roles of alternative treatment methods rather than relying solely on drug-based treatments.

The Strategic Plan was submitted to the National Drugs Strategy Team for consideration and funding has been approved for the implementation of a detailed Action Plan over the three-year period 2005–2008.  

1. Southern Regional Drugs Task Force (2005) Strategic Plan 2005–2008. Cork: SRDTF.


Item Type
Publication Type
Irish-related, Open Access, Article
Drug Type
All substances
Issue Title
Issue 19, Autumn 2006
July 2006
Page Range
p. 12
Health Research Board
Issue 19, Autumn 2006
Accession Number
HRB (Available)

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