Words: Eva O’Beirne
The support comes as Fianna Fáil TDs James Lawless and Paul McAuliffe have shown their support for the decriminalisation of drugs as the “war on drugs is not working”.
Both Taoiseach Leo Varadkar and Tánaiste Martin have promised that a citizens’ assembly on the issue of drugs will be set up this year, with strong implications that it could be established before the summer.
The news comes as an Oireachtas committee recommended the decriminalisation of drugs for personal use in December.
The committee have made several recommendations to expand drug policies in Ireland, particularly policies surrounding cannabis.
The committee recommended the decriminalisation of possession of drugs for personal use, the expansion of the Medical Cannabis Access Programme, the rapid expansion of the drug testing pilot scheme, first trialled at Electric Picnic, and the proposed Citizens’ Assembly on drugs be held as soon as possible.
The report also recommended that future policy examine the “cultivation of currently illicit substances” at a modest, non-profit level.
The committee also recommended that Ireland’s first medically supervised injecting centre, planned for Dublin, be opened as soon as possible.
The injection centre got the green light in January – but it is unclear when it will start operating.
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