Addicts shoot up in city centre phonebox as shoppers walk by

HEROIN addicts are shooting up in a phone box in Cork city centre, as shoppers walk by.

This shocking image shows heroin paraphernalia in the phone box across from the GPO on Oliver Plunkett St.

The latest photo highlighting the prevalence of heroin use in the city centre comes just weeks after Senator Colette Kelleher told The Echo that an injection centre is needed for Cork, as a harm reduction measure.

She said people have to “crawl behind bins, hide in alleyways and street corners” to take heroin.

She said Ireland’s aim to eliminate hepatitis B by 2030 can be achieved through education about injecting safely.

In recent months, there were two incidents where children found syringes — one in Togher and one on Grattan St. And in another recent incident, a child found two wraps of heroin on a footpath in a Knocknaheeny housing estate.

In recent weeks, a Cork woman told The Echo that she was walking through the city centre in when she came across three syringes on Grafton St, linking Oliver Plunkett St to the top of the South Mall. Just minutes later, she witnessed a drug deal being done a short distance away.

Last month, an estimated €105,000 worth of heroin was seized in Kent Station.

Supervised injection centres for heroin users in Cork and Dublin were part of the 2016 plans for government. However, the Dublin plans, by Merchant’s Quay, were rejected by Dublin City Council in July, with the possible impact on tourism in the area cited as one of the reasons for the rejection.

The decision will impact on the timescale for such a facility in Cork as the Dublin centre was to be a pilot for other such centres in Ireland. According to the HSE, there is no time frame for a Cork centre.

An appeal has been lodged against the decision by Merchant’s Quay.

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