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Addicts still here when visitors go?

A GARDA clampdown on gangs of drug addicts in Dublin city centre ahead of the St Patrick's Day weekend is welcome. According to reports, officers have carried out sweeps of street dealers on both sides of the Liffey in recent days and weeks.

The move comes as thousands of visitors are set to descend on the city centre over the coming week for the St Patrick's Day celebrations.

While welcome, this news begs an obvious question: why can't such concentrated enforcement be put in place for the rest of the year?

Anti-social behaviour, caused by gangs of drug-using and selling addicts, is a serious problem, particularly in the Talbot Street, North Earl Street and O'Connell Street areas.

Law-abiding Dubliners, who walk through these areas year-round, deserve just as much protection from these gangs as tourists.

Will this garda initiative be retained? Or will it be business as usual for the dealers next week?