Wednesday 22 November 2017

Detox beds, not injecting rooms, are the answer to drug problem

People protest outside Leinster House about the increase in homelessness on the first anniversary of the death of Jonathan Corrie in 2015. Photo: Arthur Carron
People protest outside Leinster House about the increase in homelessness on the first anniversary of the death of Jonathan Corrie in 2015. Photo: Arthur Carron
David Quinn

David Quinn

It is now two years since Jonathan Corrie was found dead in a doorway near Leinster House. The incident caused much hand-wringing over the homelessness problem in Ireland. There was a call for more hostel beds.

But then we discovered that Mr Corrie had been offered a bed in a hostel by homelessness services several times and refused it. As more information came to light, it turned out that Mr Corrie's big problem was drug addiction.

The other day, the Health Research Board produced figures for the number of drug-related deaths during the period 2004-2014. In 2014, there were 697 such deaths.

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