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Drugs: Misuse

Volume 488: debated on Monday 23 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what percentage of those brought into a police station tested positive for Class A drugs in 2007-08; and what the level of voluntary treatment take-up was. (256692)

Drug testing of offenders for specified Class A drugs (heroin and cocaine/crack) in police custody takes place in 107 BCUs. Offenders arrested or charged with a “trigger offence”—largely acquisitive crime related offences—are required to provide a sample to be tested.

The average rate of positive tests for specified Class A drugs for offenders arrested or charged with a trigger offence in 2007-08 was 38.7 per cent.

The figure for number of offenders entering treatment through DIP includes individuals from both DIP intensive areas (i.e. the 107 BCUs operating drug testing and related interventions) and the non-intensive areas of the programme. Offenders from the DIP non-intensive BCUs are not drug tested.

The data on the proportion of those who test positive and voluntarily agree to treatment are not available in the format requested. The Drug Interventions Programme does not routinely hold data on those entering treatment only as a result of a positive drug test.

In 2007-08 the number of offenders entering treatment voluntarily through the Drug Interventions Programme was 43,903.