‘Legal Highs’ packaging find causes concern in Carrick

Jonathan Cooke, PUP, taking part in the recent clean up in the Minorca area. INCT 24-064-GR
Jonathan Cooke, PUP, taking part in the recent clean up in the Minorca area. INCT 24-064-GR

The discovery of a “substantial amount” of ‘legal high’ packaging has led to a call for an inter-agency approach to tackling the issue in Carrick.

The appeal was issued by the Progressive Unionist Party after a number of representatives took part in a recent clean-up in the Minorca area of the town.

Mel Brown, from the PUP, said: “The evidence I witnessed suggested the area has become a long standing place for people using these drugs as some were worn in to the pavement and some looked fresh.

“We have been in contact with the PSNI and charities who work with youth from the area in a bid to collectively educate and raise awareness, however, we urge as many as possible to join together to collectively tackle this extremely harmful activity, this should naturally involve schools and youth groups.

“We also raise the need for better resources for parents who may suspect use.”

In response, Mid and East Antrim Borough Council said it welcomes a multi-agency approach to dealing with ‘legal highs’ in general.

An MEA statement to the Carrick Times added: “Our current proactive approach in Larne involves environmental health officials dealing with the sale of unsafe products under existing consumer safety legislation – an initiative that is being supported by the Police Service of Northern Ireland (PSNI).

“Mid and East Antrim Borough Council’s Larne Policing and Community Safety Partnership (PCSP) and the PSNI have also joined forces to deliver a public awareness campaign to target all forms of substance abuse. The project is targeted at young people, as well as adults and aims to raise awareness of the risks posed by substance abuse, particularly the abuse of so-called ‘legal highs’.

“Currently, no Mid and East Antrim Borough Council officials or the PCSP are aware of any such ‘legal highs’ being sold in Carrickfergus. If anyone has information regarding their sale, they should provide details to officials within the Environmental Health team in Carrickfergus.”