Ireland should follow Portugal and decriminalise personal drug use, says addiction specialist

Ireland needs to follow Portugal's example when it comes to drugs according to a leading medic.

Addiction specialist Dr Garrett McGovren says the Portuguese who decriminalised drug use nearly 20 years ago have the lowest number of fatal overdoses in Europe.

The Government yesterday launched a public consultation to find out the general opinion on our own laws.

It is considering scrapping criminal convictions for people caught with drugs for their own use.

Addiction specialist Dr Garrett McGovren

Dr McGovren thinks it is time for a change.

He said: "You know, we've been doing the same old thing for many many years, and it doesn't seem to be very effective, it's costing an awful lot of money.

"I think we need a new approach and the Portuguese model in terms of decriminalising drugs for personal use doesn't result in an increase in drug use, and it actually captures the people who need treatment."

More on this topic

Garda figures indicate big rise in cocaine trafficking

State committee mulls drugs diversion scheme

Time to give serious consideration to cancelling Christmas in future

Residents of Meath village unite to stop drug dealers

More in this Section

Health committee chief to back no confidence vote in Simon Harris

McDonald calls for ‘compassionate’ approach to the past

Robinson says sustainable goals should be part of education curriculum

Minister sings verse from musical film Bedknobs And Broomsticks to sum up Stormont talks


Want to have a whale of a time? IWDG bringing Iceland expedition stories to libraries

Mature students should start on grant applications

Rosamund Pike’s battle to portray war reporter Marie Colvin

Other side of Gaza: Irish film-makers highlight ordinary lives in the besieged territory

More From The Irish Examiner