Seán Crowe T.D. has called for more government action to tackle the scourge of open drug dealing in his constituency. The Tallaght TD raised the issue with the Minister for Justice, Charlie Flanagan, in the Dáil recently. Deputy Crowe said: “Open drug dealing is a scourge in our communities and there is an inadequate and weak response from the government and An Garda Síochána. They are more than aware of the extent of the problem but seem reluctant to act, maybe due to resources or operational reasons, and close it down.

“I have been involved in the local Drugs Taskforce practically since it was established. I have highlighted drug problems since the early days of the heroin epidemic in Dublin. I have long campaigned for supports and resources for communities and those with a drug addiction. I have to say, that I have never before seen the scale of drugs that is currently being openly sold in our communities. Yet there are less members in the Tallaght Drugs Unit now than there was 10 years ago. “I told the Minister about constituents who every night have drug dealers gather outside their homes to sell heroin or cocaine, including crack cocaine. That they have had to move children from their bedrooms because they can’t sleep with the shouting and noise from cars pulling up and speeding away.

“I told him about shop owners who have to close early because of drug dealing in front of their shops. I told him of a young person growing up looking at open drug dealing in their communities and passing drug paraphernalia that is littering their communities on the way to school. I spoke of the alarming normalisation of drug taking and drug.” Crowe continued: “We need a change of strategy from the government and a new urgency to tackle this growing problem.  Even former Drugs Ministers are now saying that the drugs strategy is failing and the drugs epidemic is escalating. “I want to see a range of new supports made available for communities to fight back. Communities feel left behind. We need to empower people and to encourage communities, but they need to know you have their back.

“This problem cannot be addressed without the support and involvement of communities. “New thinking and new strategies, and a whole new approach, is needed if we are to begin the fight back against open drug dealing in our communities. In view of the scale of the challenge, residents want to see action from government and the Gardaí, not more of the same.”