Following news of spiking incidents, Minister for Further and Higher Education, Simon Harris announced on the 5th of November that an awareness campaign is being planned.
UCDSU has also released a warning to ensure UCD students are aware of the surge in spiking cases nationwide and to share the signs that indicate a person has been spiked. ]These signs include: a person appearing intoxicated, slurring words and being unable to finish a sentence, feeling a sense of paranoia, memory loss and a loss of consciousness.
If students suspect there is something wrong with their drink, they can look for signs such as their drink appearing foggy, the ice sinking, a change in the drink’s colour and an excessive amount of bubbles.
Harris is soon to meet with the Minister for Justice to discuss the growing problem which he described as “a major worry”.
The government campaign is specifically targeted at students.
Nightclubs and late-night bars reopened on the 22nd of October for the first time since March 2020 due to Covid-19. The previous curfew of bars and pubs closing at 23:30 is also not in force anymore.
Party-goers and business owners are now facing another obstacle to safe clubbing.
In the past week, there have been several incidents of spiking reported to the Gardai from both bars and nightclubs, with cases in Dublin and Limerick, describing drugs being administered through injection rather than through drinks.
According to ITV, some 200 similar cases have been reported in the UK and many people have taken to social media to raise awareness, share their experiences, and urge others to remain vigilant when going out. These posts also include pictures of the marking and bruising left by the injections.
UCDSU has advised those going to clubs to stay with “people you know when you are out”.
Lisa Lavelle – Reporter
Additional reporting – Mahnoor Choudhry