The Aim Of This Chapter Is To Explore The Current Prevalence

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The aim of this chapter is to explore the current prevalence of substance misuse in the UK. The chapter aims to discover the prevalence of substance misuse, the character of individuals that misuse substances and the availability of substances on UK streets. The effects of this on individuals, families and community’s will be explored, as will the results this has on the UK prison population. We will end this chapter with a brief exploration of why individuals use substances, and why they become problematic for some and not others. It is fundamental to a study of this kind to begin to look at the current state of substance misuse in the U.K and globally. The ideal starting point here would be statistics collected by the Home Office in the …show more content…

It could be suggested, that these individual represent a high number of problem substance misusers. In terms of police recorded crime statistics, many critics have argued that these statistics should be viewed critically, as Smith States “these statistics have long been recognised as having a number of weaknesses. First, there have been regular claims that the police adjust their crime statistics to improve measured reported performance. Second, the processes and categories used by local police to record crime have historically had a significant degree of local variability; this has made it difficult both to make comparisons among local forces and to form aggregates to provide a meaningful national picture. Third, the unknown potentially distorts the picture that emerges from recorded crime and uncontrollable variability in the public’s reporting of crime to the police. A number of attempts have been made over the years to address these perceived problems but they largely remain” (Smith, 2006). Criticisms aside, it can be argued that whilst still employing a critical eye and allowing room for a likely under representation, these statistics are the nearest we can get to a picture of the problem of substance misuse in the U.K. As this study is concerned with current drug

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