- England and Wales has almost
the lowest recorded level of drug use in the adult population
since measurement began in 1996. Individuals reporting use of
any drug in the last year fell significantly from 11.1% in 1996
to 8.9% in 2011-12. There was also a substantial fall in the use
of cannabis from 9.5% in 1996 to 6.9% in 2011-12.
- The prevalence of drug use among 11 to 15 year
olds has also declined since 2001. In 2010, 18% of pupils reported
that they had ever taken drugs and 12% said they had taken drugs
in the last year, compared with 29% and 20% in 2001.
- Around four in five adults (78%) who had taken
any illicit drug in the last year thought it was very or fairly
easy for them to personally get illegal drugs when they wanted
them: around a third (34%) thought it was very easy and 44% thought
it fairly easy. Adults who had not taken any illicit drug in the
last year perceived a slightly lower level of ease of obtaining
illegal drugs if they wanted them (75% perceived it to be very
or fairly easy to obtain drugs compared with 78% of those that
had taken drugs in the last year).
- Around 50% of all organised crime groups are
involved in drugs and 80% of the most harmful groups are involved
in drugs predominantly in importation/supply of class A drugs.
- Drugs account for some 20% of all crime proceeds,
about half of transnational organized crime proceeds and between
0.6% and 0.9% of global GDP. Drug-related profits available for
money-laundering through the financial system would be equivalent
to between 0.4% and 0.6% of global GDP.