The Malta Hotel and Restaurant Association said on Wednesday it had seen an increase in violence and accidents related to drug abuse and called for a national debate to raise awareness.
MHRA refers to A 30-year-old Turkish woman was killed when she was run over by a car in Gżira in the early hours of Wednesday, while causing considerable damage to a nearby restaurant.
To say the least, the MHRA is appalled by the dynamics of the accident, especially the alleged aggressive behavior of the driver under the influence of drugs in light of media reports.
First, the MHRA expresses its condolences to the families and friends of the victims of this tragedy and expresses its solidarity with them and with the restaurants and other businesses that have suffered significant property damage.
The MHRA also expressed its solidarity with police officers and bystanders who stepped in to help with the situation, who were allegedly threatened by the driver of the car involved in the tragedy.
Without prejudice to the case, the MHRA said it was seriously concerned about what appeared to be an increase in substance abuse-related violence and accidents in our community. Drugs are the bane of a healthy society and economy and must be tackled with the highest sense of urgency by the relevant authorities to avoid drug epidemics. The MHRA believes that there are enough indicators to merit a national debate to raise awareness of the issue and significantly increase action to curb society-wide use of illicit drugs, which can be one of the leading causes of mental health problems and all their negative effects.
To this end, the MHRA has called upon the MCESD Council to discuss this issue as a matter of urgency and accordingly form a joint opinion for consideration by the government.