Growing issue of drug-related intimidation must be tackled – McGuinness

Time to talk about anti-social behaviour and drug abuse in Dungarvan - McGuinnessSinn Féin Councillor Conor D. McGuinness has said that funding, Garda resources and political will are necessary to tackle a ‘huge escalation’ in drug-related intimidation. He made the comments in the presence of Senior Garda management at a recent meeting of the Waterford Joint Policing Committee.

McGuinness said:

There has been a huge escalation in drug-related intimidation and an explosion in drug abuse over the last decade. There are too many distraught and frantic parents taking loans to pay so-called drugs debts in order to protect their children, themselves and their homes from attack by violent thugs.

“Drug-related intimidation and violence affects people from all kinds of backgrounds and in all parts of Waterford. It doesn’t just involve drug-dealers and drug-users. Families, neighbors and bystanders have all been caught up in threatening behaviour and violence as a result of this growing issue.

“It is any wonder we have a growing drugs problem? Funding for drugs task forces was slashed over the past 12 years. We have a new National Drugs Strategy but no money to implement it. Government has buried its head in the sand and ignored a growing problem.

“We need to get real about this problem and demand adequate funding for support agencies and additional Garda resources to fight this scourge.

“If you are being threatened or intimidated by a drug gang you can contact the Family Support Network in Waterford on 051 357767 in complete confidence.”