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Home > Perceptions of the social harms associated with khat use.

Sykes, Wendy and Coleman, Nick and Desai, Philly and Groom, Carola and Gure, Mohamud and Howarth, Radhika (2010) Perceptions of the social harms associated with khat use. London: Home Office. Research Report 44.

PDF (UK Home Office report 44: Khat) - Published Version

A stimulant used predominately by members of the UK’s Somali, Yemeni and Ethiopian communities is to be reviewed by the government’s expert advisory body.

Grown in East Africa and the Middle East, khat is used by around 0.2 per cent of the UK population according to the latest British Crime Survey. Users report that chewing the substance can promote alertness and relaxation.

Social harms:
Home Office research (new window) out today looked at social harms associated with khat, along with appropriate government responses and treatment services.

Focus groups among users and non-users, as well as drugs professionals revealed:
• khat chewing is a widespread and socially acceptable practice in Somali, Yemeni and Ethiopian communities. However, heavy use is seen as a problem
• few reports of khat-use being linked to crime
• some form of government intervention is favoured

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