Drug use on the rise among Cork's student population, say gardaí

Drug use on the rise among Cork's student population, say gardaí
Gardaí are warning that drugs like cocaine are 'freely available' among students.

GARDAÍ in Cork are warning that drug use is on the rise among students in UCC.

The head of the Cork Drugs Squad Declan O’Sullivan and UCC Community Policing officer Trish O’Riordan have both warned that cocaine and synthetic drugs are becoming more common.

Gardaí noted an increase in use last year and, with students having started back at the city's third level institutions in recent weeks, the problem appears to be prominent again.

"The problem was always there but last year it became more noticeable," Det Insp O’Sullivan said.

"Heroin is unlikely to be on the campus. It is a different type of drug, but you would see some cocaine around the place.

"All types of drugs are freely available."

Community Garda O’Riordan said the issue appeared to be prevalent again this year following a rise in usage last year.

With regards to the recent Freshers week, Garda O’Riordan said, “There is a problem with drugs in the area of the college among college going individuals.” 

Offering some advice to students who may be toying with the idea of experimenting with illegal substances, Garda O’Riordan said, “Stay away from it. Just enjoy your drink and have a laugh with your friends. You don’t need it.”

UCC Students’ Union officer Kelly Coyle said the Students’ Union have been very active in combating the issue of drug taking around the college.

“There a number of things that the Students' Union have been doing to try and tackle drug use in college.

“Last years SU ran a 'What's in the powder?' campaign to highlight the fact that drugs don't always contain what you might think.

“A lot of what we do is to try and raise awareness for the damaging effects drugs can have both long and short-term.

“We have a few campaigns like this in the making for the coming year.

"We are also working alongside the university to create the MiUse programme which is based on the E-Pub survey we launched a number of years ago on alcohol use.”

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