The prevalence of drug use in urban Aboriginal communities
Version of Record online: 24 JAN 2006
Volume 89, Issue 10, pages 1319–1331, October 1994
How to Cite
PERKINS, J. J., SANSON-FISHER, R. W., BLUNDEN, S., LUNNAY, D., REDMAN, S. and HENSLEY, M. J. (1994), The prevalence of drug use in urban Aboriginal communities. Addiction, 89: 1319–1331. doi: 10.1111/j.1360-0443.1994.tb03311.x
- Issue online: 24 JAN 2006
- Version of Record online: 24 JAN 2006
The use of both licit and illicit drugs has been identified as a major health issue for Australian Aborigines. However, data on the proportion of people who use such drugs is scant. This cross-sectional survey of a randomly selected sample of urban Aboriginal people provides information on the use of the drugs alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, cocaine, heroin as well as petrol sniffing. Overall, a significantly smaller proportion of Aboriginal people were found to be current alcohol drinkers compared to non-Aboriginal Australians. A larger proportion of these drinkers were, however, found to be drinking at levels that were hazardous to their health. A significantly greater proportion of people from the Aboriginal sample were also found to be smokers compared to their non-Aboriginal counterparts. An examination of the use of the illicit substances revealed that a greater proportion reported they had ever used marijuana, compared to the other substances. The findings are discussed in terms of their implications for the health of Aboriginal people.