Ennis demands HSE methadone clinic as heroin addiction rises

A CLARE town is stepping up demands for the HSE to establish a methadone clinic.

Ennis mayor Michael Guilfoyle supported a call by Cllr Paul O’Shea for the town council to press the HSE for the service.

This comes after a reported fivefold rise in people requiring treatment for heroin addiction in Ennis.

At the council’s September meeting, Mr O’Shea said: “The figures show there is a need for a methadone clinic.”

He said it was alarming to note a 400% increase in one year in people seeking help for heroin addiction in Ennis.

The Labour Party councillor said that, along with a clinic for heroin and cocaine users, Ennis and Clare requires a detox nurse and increased day services for addicts.

He further requested that county coroner Isobel O’Dea submit a report to the council on the numbers who have died recently from drugs and alcohol.

He said: “I’m sure everyone here would be absolutely shocked to hear of the numbers who have passed away through drink and drugs.

“The professionals involved in drug treatment need to sit down and look at the figures and come up with a pro-active response to this. This is very, very serious.”

Cllr Johnny Flynn (FG) claimed there was a huge growth in the problem of heroin in Ennis. “It’s a result of the movement of people from other areas into Ennis. We have our own problems here. We are a very open town, but there are people quietly suffering the impact of drugs because the quality of their residential life has been negatively affected by people taking heroin. It is a scourge that has come to the town.”

Mr Guilfoyle said: “We all recognise the difficulty with the amount of drugs that are available. Ennis gardaí have recently had a haul of €175,000 worth of drugs and we need to put in place a meeting to set up a centre.”

Cllr Peter Considine (FF) warned that objections to two recent projects, a homeless hostel and a youth centre in Ennis, were on grounds that they would be attractive to drug users.


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