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Poll Finds Public Gives Low Grades to War on Drugs


April 1995

A new poll by the public interest group Drug Strategies finds that the public assigns low grades to the government for dealing with the drug problem (Drug Strategies, Americans Look at the Drug Problem, 1995).

The survey finds that those polled support a balanced approach to dealing with the drug problem, with 44% reporting they would spend the same amount of money on prevention, education, and treatment as they would on law enforcement. 20% said that they would spend 75% or more of funds on law enforcement, and more than one-third of those surveyed said they would spend more than 75% of the funds on prevention, education, and treatment.

Those surveyed gave the government low marks for dealing with drug-related programs:

"A" "B" "C" "D" "F" Not Sure
Drug use and addiction 3% 7% 36% 23% 27% 4%
Drug-related crime 2 9 26 27 32 4
Drugs and the workplace 10 24 28 11 14 13
Drug abuse and health 5 15 36 16 21 7

The poll, conducted by Peter D. Hart Research Associates, surveyed 1,003 Americans between February 16 and 19.

Drug Strategies is a non-profit foundation that promotes more effective approaches to the nation's drug problems, and supports private and public initiatives to reduce the demand for drugs through prevention, education, treatment, and law enforcement.

[To obtain a copy of this report, contact Drug Strategies at 2445 M Street, NW, Suite 480, Washington, DC 20037, 202-663-6090.]