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UISCE. (2017) UISCE strategic plan 2017. Dublin: UISCE.

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UISCE (Union for Improved Services Communication and Education) provide an independent representative voice for people who use drugs and work towards protecting their civil liberties and human rights.

UISCE is aware of the need to constantly renew and regenerate our priorities to be responsive to the needs of people who use drugs. The use of drugs and the people who use them are an ever changing landscape. The influence of new psychoactive substances is evolving and with the recent amendments to the Misuse of Drugs act, the number people who identify as people who use drugs is growing. UISCE undertakes outreach to engage with the community to identify trends and issues from a broad range of people who use drugs. We share this information where decisions are made that impact the lives of people who use drugs to ensure their voice is included in the development of policy and programs. UISCE is aligned with the National Drug strategy and makes sure that the centrality of engagement in the strategy is made actual through our involvement.

In a survey among people who inject drugs in public places undertaken by UISCE from December 2016 to January 2017 undertaken by UISCE, 86.7% identified heroin as the primary drug used. A report from the Health Service Executive (2017) Health service performance report August/September 2016 says “As of 31st August 2016, there were 9,652 patients receiving treatment for opiate use (excluding prisons).” For this reason, UISCE’s focus is on the group of people who have the least opportunity to have their voice heard. This means, we actively seek out people who are currently injecting on the streets, many of whom identify as homeless. UISCE acknowledge many people in this group identify as poly drug users and will continue to support any person seeking representation. UISCE aims in all communication and activities to be mindful of the stigma associated with the use of drugs and works to reduce the impact of stigma on the community of people who use drugs.

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