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Poll: Should the possession of drugs for personal use be decriminalised?

Many groups have long called for drug use to be addressed as a social and health issue, rather than as a criminal justice issue.

File photo of a woman smoking cannabis
File photo of a woman smoking cannabis
Image: Shutterstock/Canna Obscura

CAMPAIGNERS HAVE CALLED for laws around the possession of small amounts of drugs to be reformed amid concerns that legislation is not tackling problem drug use.

Many groups have long called for drug use to be addressed as a social and health issue, rather than as a criminal justice issue. However, others disagree and fear the move could increase drug use.

The possession of any amount of cannabis is illegal under Irish law, although an individual found guilty of possession for personal use can escape a criminal conviction if it is their first time before the courts.

Anna Quigley of Citywide Drugs Crisis Campaign is among those who have questioned whether this approach makes sense. “If it’s not a criminal offence the first time but it is criminal offence the third time, is there any logic in that?” she told The Journal.

“If you have got an addiction problem, you’ll be using pretty regularly and the chances of you being caught more than once or twice are quite significant.”

What do you think: Should the possession of drugs for personal use be decriminalised?


Poll Results:

Yes, all drugs (7267)
Yes for cannabis but not harder drugs (7059)
No (3528)
I'm not sure (483)




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About the author:

Órla Ryan

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