Dáil Éireann - Volume 581 - 09 March, 2004
Written Answers - National Drugs Strategy.
Mr. Durkan Mr. Durkan
434. Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs his plans to improve his Department’s response to the ravages caused to communities by drugs; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7880/04]
Mr. Durkan Mr. Durkan
435. Mr. Durkan asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs if he intends to make serious resources available to communities dealing with the drug problem; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [7881/04]
Mr. N. Ahern Mr. N. Ahern
Mr. N. Ahern:I propose to take Questions Nos. 434 and 435 together.
My Department has overall responsibility for co-ordinating the implementation of the national drugs strategy 2001-2008. The strategy contains 100 individual actions, under the four pillars of supply reduction, prevention, treatment and research, to be implemented by a range of Departments and agencies. My Department also has responsibility for the work of the 14 local drugs task forces, LDTFs, as well as the young people’s facilities and services fund, YPFSF.
The role of the LDTFs is to prepare local action plans which include a range of measures for treatment, rehabilitation, education, prevention and curbing local supply. In addition, the LDTFs provide a mechanism for the co-ordination of services in these areas, while at the same time allowing local communities and voluntary organisations to participate in the planning, design and delivery of those services. They are designed to complement and add value to the extensive range of interventions being delivered through the State agencies. The main aim of the YPFSF is to attract at risk young people in disadvantaged areas into recreational facilities and activities and divert them away from the dangers of substance abuse. The fund operates in the 14 LDTF areas as well as four other urban centres — Galway, Limerick, Carlow and Waterford.
To date over €65 million has been allocated or spent to implement the various projects contained in the two rounds of plans of the  LDTFs. A further €11.5 million has been allocated to projects under the premises initiative which is designed to meet the accommodation needs of community based drugs projects and approximately €68 million has been allocated or spent under the first round of funding under the YPFSF. In this context, I hope to make announcements about round II allocations in the near future.
The Deputy should also note that under the national drugs strategy, regional drugs task forces, RDTFs, have been established in the ten health board regions. The RDTFs are currently mapping out the patterns of drug misuse in their areas, as well as the range and level of existing services, with a view to better co-ordination and addressing gaps in the overall provision.
Question No. 436 answered with Question No. 115.
Questions Nos. 437 and 438 answered with Question No. 185.
Dáil Éireann 581 Written Answers National Drugs Strategy.