The Dublin City Business Association is calling for 6 drug treatment centres to be moved from the city centre to industrial estates on the edges of the city. They don’t like begging and they don’t like drug-dealers – fair enough you might say. The people who would be affected, however, are not drug-dealers and beggars, but people who are seeking support to recover from drug misuse. Some of them sell drugs, some of them beg. Some of them look after their families and some of them have full-time jobs. Pushing people out of the city centre pushes them even further out on the margins of society.
Ever notice how Finglas, Tallaght and Ballymun have large numbers of people with drug problems? And how Rathgar, Merrion Square and Killiney have relatively few? Marginalisation – leaving people out of society – is a huge factor in drug abuse. Bad planning and ignoring people’s needs have contributed massively to the drug problems we have in Dublin today. Should the people who are actively seeking help for their problem drug use be pushed even further out of our society? Here at Sankalpa, we say no.
The streets belong to everyone.