A new RTE documentary, The Hardest Hit, aired tonight and cut to the core of the nation's drug culture. presented by Dublin GAA star Philly McMahon, the programme explored the causes and potential solutions to drug addiction.
It was an extraordinarily revealing and powerful look at the nation's inability to tackle an increasingly troublesome issue. McMahon invited cameras into his home and world as he revealed the work he does with Mountjoy’s Progression Unit as well as the impact that heroin addiction had on his older Brother, John.
The programme advocated for decriminalisation and a drug court, while McMahon also discussed the variety of services that should be recruited in a bid to deal with the problem.
— Suzy Byrne (@suzybie) October 21, 2018
College is not a normal thing for people from Ballymun. I was the first of my family to go to college too, going to @DublinCityUni just like @PhillyMcMahon. Something a lot of other people take for granted, being from Ballymun made it feel impossible. #TheHardestHit
— Kim (@_KimCon) October 21, 2018
12 yrs in Children’s Court in Smithfield has taught me that young men fall into substance misuse so easily and often to mask trauma. Investing in education, sport, mental health and adolescent drug projects so important. Mentors, advocates and role models also key #thehardesthit
— Gareth Noble (@GarNob) October 21, 2018
— Dearbhail McDonald (@DearbhailDibs) October 21, 2018
This documentary should be shown at every secondary assembly in the morning! Incredible young man! #TheHardestHit
— Mairead McLeod (@MaireadMcleod) October 21, 2018
"It only takes one person to believe in you and when you have that you don't want to let that person down" Powerful words from a man six months clean after 20 years of Heroin addiction 😢 #TheHardestHit
— Donna Martin (@DonnaMartin03) October 21, 2018
Fair play to Philly McMahon for highlighting and humanising the drugs epidemic. This is public service TV at its best. Any chance our politicians might cogently address what is a national issue and properly fund relevant programmes around the country? #TheHardestHit
— Peter O'Connell (@Westclarepage) October 21, 2018
Please show #TheHardestHit in all schools ASAP! Heartbreaking. Well done to all involved.
— Grainne Jackman (@GrainneJackman) October 21, 2018
— Dr. Alison Gilliland (@AlisonINTO) October 21, 2018
#TheHardestHit @PhillyMcMahon So proud of you Philly and the massive impact you make on vulnerable kids who need a hero 👊 First class doc @BallymunGAA @aoifekava @young_ballymun #ballymun #decriminalisation #boysinblue
— Teresa Mannion (@TeresaMannion) October 21, 2018
There was a touching scene that saw McMahon's parents detail the tragic impact addiction had on his relationship with his brother and how Gaelic football helped him cope. McMahon's father, Phil, has since passed away due to stomach cancer.
It was an educational and essential programme that is well worth seeking out should you have missed it on first viewing.