Eugene Murphy Tarmonbarry Portiuncula

Eugene Murphy – “Drug abuse a reality in towns and villages across Roscommon/Galway”

Eugene Murphy Tarmonbarry Portiuncula

Fianna Fáil TD for Roscommon/Galway, Eugene Murphy has said the devastating effects of the abuse of drugs is not just an issue which affects inner city Dublin as the abuse of both controlled and illicit drugs is very much a reality in towns and villages throughout the constituency of Roscommon/Galway.

Speaking in the Dáil on the Misuse of Drugs (Amendment) Bill 2016, Deputy Murphy said: “This Bill has been long overdue and will go some way towards tackling the scourge of problem drug use throughout the country. Problem drug use can have a seismic rippling knock on effect as it is not just the individual drug user who suffers but there is a devastating impact on the drug user’s family and wider society in terms of vandalism, violence and public order. Drug use can sever family ties and cut through the very heart of the family unit leaving children without fathers and mothers and seeing them taken into care and being thrown into the chaos of the ‘system’ and very often the vicious cycle of drug abuse continues on to the next generation. Communities and towns and villages throughout the country are also now finding themselves under siege from the illicit sale of prescription drugs and these so called Z drugs which are highly addictive and in some cases can be fatal,” said Eugene Murphy.

The Fianna Fail TD noted that there is also a growing crisis with poly-drug use and with the abuse of a particularly strong, synthetic form of cannabis that can create anxiety, depression and psychosis. He noted that early intervention was vital in an attempt to tackle problem drug and get drugs users, their families and those at risk of drug use the support they need.“ I would like to see more support for Regional Drug and Alcohol Taskforces- it can unfortunately be all too easy for former drug users to relapse and fall prey to their devastating addictions so strong aftercare structures are vital and I would also like to see more intervention and drug awareness programmes being introduced in schools to children at a young age as well as establishing family support programmes for the children of drug users in an attempt to break the vicious cycle and shine some glimmer of hope on what can be the dark, lonely and threatening reality of a life ruled by the chaos of a drug addiction,” said Deputy Murphy.

Alcohol abuse

The Fianna Fail TD also spoke in relation to the abuse of another controlled drug namely the growing epidemic of alcohol abuse.

“The estimated cost of excessive alcohol consumption is €3.7 billion a year due to health, crime/public order and other costs,” said Deputy Murphy. The Fianna Fail TD also said he was alarmed at the findings of the recent survey from the Galway Healthy Cities Alcohol Forum of 500 adults which found that 55% of those surveyed in Galway city were hazardous drinkers.”

“The survey also found that one in four people of those surveyed in Galway city have experienced one or more harms as a result of someone else’s drinking while 74% were in favour of a ban on alcohol advertising that appeals to young people and some 62% agree that there should be a minimum price for alcohol below which it cannot be sold,” said Eugene Murphy.