'I could have went down a different path': Talking to people who used drugs problematically and service providers about Irish drug policy alternatives

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dc.contributor.author Leonard, James
dc.contributor.author Windle, James
dc.date.accessioned 2020-08-07T13:20:50Z
dc.date.available 2020-08-07T13:20:50Z
dc.date.issued 2020-08-06
dc.identifier.citation Leonard, J. and Windle, J. (2020) '‘I could have went down a different path’: Talking to people who used drugs problematically and service providers about Irish drug policy alternatives', International Journal of Drug Policy, 84, 102891, (8 pp). doi: 10.1016/j.drugpo.2020.102891 en
dc.identifier.volume 84 en
dc.identifier.startpage 1 en
dc.identifier.endpage 8 en
dc.identifier.issn 0955-3959
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/10468/10369
dc.identifier.doi 10.1016/j.drugpo.2020.102891 en
dc.description.abstract Background: People who use drugs problematically are consistently left out of consultations and deliberation on drug policy. This article explores how people who formerly used drugs problematically and service providers view Ireland's current drug policy and if alternative policies could be successful in an Irish context. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with eight people who used drugs problematically and six practitioners working with people who use drugs in Cork city, Ireland. All people who used drugs problematically had at least one year of abstinence and had been criminalised because of their drug use, all but one had served at least one custodial sentence. Participants were asked their opinions on safe injecting facilities, heroin assisted treatment, decriminalisation of drugs for personal use, depenalisation of cannabis and, the relationships between economic deprivation and problematic drug use. Results: Respondents stressed that, in Cork city, problematic drug use is closely linked with economic deprivation and social exclusion. There was a near consensus that criminalisation and penalisation do not deter consumption and produce unintended consequences. All participants supported safe injecting facilities and the decriminalisation of drugs for personal use. Participants were less certain about the utility of heroin assisted treatment and depenalisation of cannabis. Many discussions drifted away from alternatives policies towards the need for improved treatment provision. Conclusion: Several participants were clear that none of the alternative policies discussed are silver bullets. Participates felt that, while they could reduce the harms caused by drugs and drug policies, the government's longer-term objectives should be increased treatment provision and, reduced social exclusion and economic deprivation. en
dc.format.mimetype application/pdf en
dc.language.iso en en
dc.publisher Elsevier en
dc.relation.uri http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0955395920302309
dc.rights © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. This submitted manuscript version is made available under the CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license. en
dc.rights.uri https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/ en
dc.subject Decriminalisation en
dc.subject Drug policy en
dc.subject Ireland en
dc.subject Safe injecting facilities en
dc.subject Heroin assisted treatment en
dc.subject People who use drugs en
dc.subject Social exclusion en
dc.subject Subterranean structuration en
dc.title 'I could have went down a different path': Talking to people who used drugs problematically and service providers about Irish drug policy alternatives en
dc.type Article (peer-reviewed) en
dc.internal.authorcontactother James Windle, Criminology, University College Cork, Cork, Ireland. +353-21-490-3000 Email: james.windle@ucc.ie en
dc.internal.availability Full text available en
dc.date.updated 2020-08-07T13:14:43Z
dc.description.version Submitted Version en
dc.internal.rssid 530057194
dc.description.status Peer reviewed en
dc.identifier.journaltitle International Journal of Drug Policy en
dc.internal.copyrightchecked Yes
dc.internal.licenseacceptance Yes en
dc.internal.IRISemailaddress james.windle@ucc.ie en
dc.identifier.articleid 102891 en


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© 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. This submitted manuscript version is made available under the CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license. Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as © 2020 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved. This submitted manuscript version is made available under the CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 license.
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