Wednesday, 10 April 2019

Ceisteanna (148)

Róisín Shortall

Ceist:

148. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Health the criteria on which the allocation of the funding will be based in respect of the additional funding of €1 million for the national drugs strategy, the €250,000 for the community alcohol programme and the €250,000 for young people at risk; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [16938/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Health)

On 06 March 2019, I announced additional funding of €1 million for the implementation of the National Drugs Strategy; "Reducing Harm, Supporting Recovery". This funding, which will be provided on a recurring, multi-annual basis, will address the priorities set down in the Strategy including early harm reduction responses, emerging trends in substance misuse, and improving services for at-risk groups.

Working in partnership with statutory, community and voluntary sectors is central to this response. On  26 March, I met with the Local and Regional Drug and Alcohol Task Forces, and the HSE, to hear their views on how best to target the additional funding. The outcome of this consultation process will  inform proposals, currently being developed, for the allocation of the funding. Further information on the criteria and proposed allocation of this new funding will be circulated to the Drug & Alcohol Task Forces and the HSE in due course. 

This year my Department will also develop two new schemes to deliver an integrated public health approach to drugs and alcohol, as set out in the National Drugs Strategy. The first will provide targeted, appropriate and effective services for young people at risk of substance abuse, focused on disadvantaged communities. The second will support evidence-based approaches to mobilising community action on alcohol. Both schemes will have a fund of €250,000 on a multi-annual basis.