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Drug Misuse Declared in 1996: Key Results From the British Crime Survey

NCJ Number
M Ramsay; J Spiller
Date Published
This report tracks changes in the consumption of prohibited drugs by the general British public, focusing mainly on 3,000 young people ages 16 to 29.
The British Crime Survey (BCS) focuses mainly on victimization, but also includes self-reported drug taking. The same process was used in the 1994 and 1996 BCS, making it possible to track changes in the consumption of prohibited drugs by the general public. Nearly 11,000 people ages 16-59 were involved in 1996, but this report centers on the 3,000 young people ages 16-29. Key findings of the study included: (1) Forty-five percent of young people ages 16-29 had taken a prohibited drug at some time, but more recent drug consumption was less widespread than was reported in the 1994 survey; (2) Cannabis was by far the most frequently used drug and figured prominently among reports of more recent consumption; (3) Between 1994 and 1996 BCS, levels of drug misuse were relatively stable across Britain and Wales as a whole; and (4) There was some regional variation in the two sets of results. Figures, references