Sinn Féin spokesperson on Addiction, Recovery and Wellbeing Thomas Gould TD has today slammed the government for failing to resource the community addiction sector.
Teachta Gould said:
“The government’s paltry spend of €4.3million in Budget 2022 on addiction services will do nothing to properly address the difficulties faced by the community, and public residential, addiction sectors in this state.
“I am in regular contact with the Local and Regional Drug and Alcohol Taskforces. I see the phenomenal work they, and the groups they work with, do on the ground. Their funding has never been restored to pre-austerity levels.
“The government has produced a budget that will not see one cent allocated to the Taskforces. This budget does nothing to resource the community sector in addressing addiction and the root causes of addiction.
“Alongside this, waiting times for rehab beds are currently out of control but there is no plan for the return of vital facilities such as Keltoi.
“Over 100 beds have been closed due to Covid-19 with no plan from the government to ensure these reopen.
“Sinn Féin’s comprehensive budget for addiction involves spending over 10 times the government’s allocation. We would use €45.47m to actively resource the community sector, open public residential beds, and finally return autonomy to experts on the ground.
“It is about time that we not only fought addiction, but resourced recovery.”