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Scottish Crime and Justice Survey 2014/15: Drug Use

Scottish Crime and Justice Survey 2014/15: Drug Use

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

ISBN: 9781786522689

This report presents findings on illicit drug use from the self-completion module of the Scottish Crime and Justice Survey. It provides data and analysis on drug use in the last month, in the last year and ever among adults aged sixteen and over in Scotland.

Executive Summary

Self-reported illicit drug use has declined between the SCJS 2008/09 and 2014/15 across: all three reporting time periods (in the last month, in the last year, and ever; all legal classifications, and both males and females.

Six per cent of adults reported having used one or more illicit drugs in the last year. This has decreased from 7.6% to 6.0% of adults between 2008/09 and 2014/15.

Between 2008/09 and 2014/15 there has also been a decrease in those reporting that someone has offered to give or sell them at least one type of illicit drug in the last year from 13.7% to 8.9%.

1.6% of adults reported that they had taken any New Psychoactive Substances (powders, pills, herbal mixtures or crystals that are sold as ‘legal highs’), at some point in their lives.

Use of NPS was higher amongst younger age groups, with 4.1% of 16-24 year-olds reporting having ever used ‘legal highs’, compared with 2.7% of 25-44 year-olds and 0.5% of 45-60 year-olds.

Of those who reported using drugs in the last month, less than a fifth (16.6%) said that they had felt dependent upon the drug they used most often in the last month.

For those respondents who had in the last month tried to cut down on the drug used most often in the last month, the majority (87.4%) said that they did not use any support services while trying to cut down.

The majority of those who had used drugs in the last month said that this was very easy (40.5%) or fairly easy (43.4%) to get hold of the drug used most often in the last month.