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United Kingdom

  • By: Marc Jung-Whan de Jong
  • In: Encyclopedia of Drug Policy
  • Edited by: Mark A. R. Kleiman & James E. Hawdon
  • Subject:Public Policy, Drug Crimes

In 2007's “An Analysis of UK Drug Policy,” a document that was commissioned by the independent UK Drug Policy Commission, researchers Peter Reuter and Alex Stevens conclude that the United Kingdom (UK) has the highest level of drug dependency in Western Europe. Reuter and Stevens also report that the British are among Western Europe's most enthusiastic recreational drug users and that the UK has the second-highest drug-related death rate of all Western European nations.

Marijuana, used by 7.4 percent of the population, is the most widely used illicit drug and has become “normalized” among the youth, at least according to Howard Parker and his associates. Cocaine (used by 2.3 percent of the population), ecstasy (1.5 percent), opiates such as heroin (1.3 percent), and amphetamine-type stimulants (1.0 ...

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