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Home > Secular trends in substance use: the conflict and young people in Northern Ireland.

Higgins, Kathryn and Percy, Andrew and McCrystal, Patrick (2004) Secular trends in substance use: the conflict and young people in Northern Ireland. Journal of Social Issues , 60 , (3) , pp. 485-506.

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The resolution of political conflict has led some to suggest that Northern Ireland will now face a range of social problems that have been ignored or suppressed by the Troubles. One such area is adolescent drug use. In this article, a review of a range of data sources shows that drug use, with few exceptions, has increased since the emergence of the ongoing peace process. Social and political changes and enhanced paramilitary involvement in the drugs trade appear to have somehow created an environment where drug use has flourished. In reviewing current drug policy and practice, the article highlights the lack of prevention, treatment, and harm reduction services established in Northern Ireland as a cause for concern.

 

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