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Home Office publishes latest statistics on drug use in England & Wales

The latest national statistics on drug use in England and Wales were published last week (26 July) by the Home Office.

The statistics are based on self reported data from the 2011/12 Crime Survey for England and Wales. Full details are available on the Home Office website.

The key findings are:

  • An estimated 8.9% of adults aged 16 to 59 (around three million) had used an illicit drug in the last year, similar to the 8.8% from the 2010/11 survey.
  • Around 3.0% of adults (around one million people) had used a Class A drug in the last year, the same level as the 2010/11 survey.
  • As in previous years, cannabis was the most commonly used type of drug in the last year (6.9% of adults, around 2.3 million people) followed by powder cocaine (2.2%, around 0.7 million).
  • Around 1.1% of adults used mephedrone in the last year, down from 1.4% in the 2010/11 survey.
  • Drug use remains more prevalent among 16 to 24 year olds than older adults.
  • 3.3% of adults aged 16 to 59 were defined as frequent drug users (having taken any illicit drug more than once a month on average in the last year). This is similar to the level recorded in the 2009/10 survey, the last time the question was asked.
  • Frequent drug use among young people aged 16 to 24 is more than twice as high (7.0%) as for adults overall.
  • Men continue to report higher levels of drug use than women; this has been the case since the 1996 survey.
  • Levels of drug use increased with increasing frequency of alcohol consumption or visits to nightclubs or pubs.

Warwickshire DAAT is currently working on a revised drugs and alcohol needs assessment. These statistics will help us to further develop our understanding of the trends in drug use.

Worried about drugs? Visit our website for advice and information about local support services.

About Paul Hooper, WCC (575 Articles)
Group Manager: Community Safety and Substance Misuse
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