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Ireland Plans to Legalize Heroin Injection Centers by the First Quarter of 2016

by Dr. Trupti Shirole on November 4, 2015 at 1:40 AM
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 Ireland Plans to Legalize Heroin Injection Centers by the First Quarter of 2016

Ireland's drugs minister Aodhan O Riordain announced that the country aims to become the latest European nation to legalize supervised heroin injecting rooms by the first quarter of next year.

O Riordain said, "It will effectively mean a diplomatic immunity to inject heroin in a safe, secure, passionate environment. It will limit the dangers of contracting HIV and Hepatitis C and also takes away the street injecting phenomenon. The first center is to be opened in Dublin in 2016."

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If introduced as planned, Ireland will follow similar models already in place in Australia and parts of Europe, such as the Netherlands, Spain and Switzerland. O Riordain said, "Essentially people come, they bring in their own material but they are provided with a medically supervised space. I want a 'cultural shift' and a 'national conversation' in Ireland on decriminalizing small amounts of drugs for personal use, following the example set by Portugal."

O Riordain further added, "I am acutely aware of the devastating consequences of drug abuse. It's my intention to start a national conversation to move us towards the Portuguese model with decriminalization across the board which I think is the proper way we should go. We're trying to change the entire context in which we discuss this issue from a moralistic one to one which is actually much more realistic and compassionate."

Source: AFP
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