Gardaí have joined forces with the hospitality industry in a bid to stamp out drugs in pubs, nightclubs and hotels, it emerged today.
Over 14,000 copies of an information booklet on drug dealing will be distributed to premises across the country as part of the National Drugs Strategy.
The ‘Guidelines Regarding Drug Dealing on or in the vicinity of Licensed Premises’ publication is designed to alert licensees of the ongoing threat of drug misuse and the need to combat abuse.
The drive is led by gardai with co-operation from the Vintners’ Federation of Ireland (VFI), the Licensed Vintners Association (LVA), the Irish Hotels Federation (IHF) and the Irish Nightclub Industry Association.
A garda spokesman explained: “The booklet also advises on the law in relation to drug issues and possession as well as the rights of licensees in seeking to prevent drug usage taking place in their premises.
“In addition, there are detailed descriptions of the signs of drug misuse to look out for in customers and the paraphernalia that goes with drug abuse.
“The booklet also offers advice on what to do if drugs are found as well as first aid information.
Gardai said the four trade groups involved recognise the issue of drug misuse and its effects on society and are fully aware of their combined responsibility to run ordered and safe houses.
“Members of all organisations involved are willing and determined to do all in their power, in conjunction with the gardai to stop the problem and prevent it from escalating further.
“It is imperative that licensees are aware of the tell-tale signs to look out for and the best, most effective actions to take if drug misuse is suspected or identified, as advised by the gardai.
“It is hoped that this information booklet will at the very least, make licensees aware of the growing problem and the warning signs to look out for.
The booklet will be launched tomorrow at the Garda National Drugs Unit in Dublin Castle by Assistant Commissioner Al McHugh of Dublin Metropolitan Region.