Read Ana Liffey Drug Project's Response to Irish Cabinet Approval of Supervised Injection Centres

Ireland has taken another huge step toward implementing the country's first ever supervised injection facility, with Dublin set to be the first city to receive one within 18 months.

On December 15, the Cabinet approved proposals put forward by the minister of state for drugs strategy, Aodhán Ó Ríordáin, for legislative amendments to be made to the Misuse of Drugs Act that will allow for a SIF to be set up, reported the Irish Examiner.

While the amendment still has to pass through parliament, Ó Ríordáin is confident it will do so in early 2016.

Tony Duffin, director of the Ana Liffey Drug Project which has been instrumental in pushing for SIFs to be implemented, welcomed the Cabinet's decision, stating:

"Naturally, we’re delighted with this decision, as the implementation of Medically Supervised Injecting Centres is something for which we have been campaigning for some time. Our staff deal every day with the reality and complexity of public injecting. Each day many people with complex addiction and mental health issues inject drugs in public spaces. This is bad for them and everybody else, and implementing Medically Supervised Injecting Centres is a compassionate and effective response to a complex problem. The evidence of the effectiveness for such services is irrefutable. With over 30 years’ experience of working with people who inject drugs in public we can say without any hesitance that this is the right thing to do. In 2015, Minister O ‘Ríordáin has established Ireland as a country which is willing to follow the evidence and implement drug policy which puts people first. This decision is indicative that this approach is also being supported at Cabinet level, and we commend the Government for its decisive leadership."