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Drug Use Rising


September-October 1994

Drug use is rising for the first time in more than a decade, according to the 1993 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse (Drugs and Drug Abuse Education Newsletter, Aug./Sept. 1994, p. 1). The number of people reporting that they had used illegal drugs in the past year increased 7%, from 22.9 million in 1992 to 24.4 million in 1993.

Dr. Lee P. Brown, director of the Office of National Drug Control Policy said the report shows that drug policies must focus on treatment. "We must expand and fund education, treatment, and prevention initiatives," he said. "There should be no question now about treatment." [It couldn't have occurred to anyone in the Justice Department or the Drug Czar's office that this rise might be due, in part, to the ineffectiveness of DARE. -- EES.]

The survey is conducted by the Office of Applied Studies of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). It samples roughly 26,000 people every year about their use of illegal drugs, alcohol, and tobacco products. Since the survey has been conducted every year since 1971, SAMHSA is able to make observations about long-term trends in drug use.

Some of the findings:

[To obtain a copy of this report, contact SAMHSA, Office of Applied Studies, Rockwall II, Suite 615, 5600 Fishers Lane, Rockville, MD 20857.]