Australian Institute of Criminology

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Readiness to change drug use and help-seeking intentions of police detainees: findings from the DUMA program

Trends & issues in crime and criminal justice no. 520

Alexandra Gannoni and Susan Goldsmid
ISSN 1836-2206
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, January 2017

Foreword | The nexus between drug use and crime is well established. Offenders are considerably more likely to use illicit drugs than the general population, and a large proportion of offenders attribute their criminal offending to drug use, yet very little is known about how to respond effectively to drug problems among police detainees.

Using data obtained through the Drug Use Monitoring in Australia (DUMA) program, this paper explores the readiness to change drug use and help-seeking intentions of Australian police detainees with drug problems.

The analysis revealed those detainees most in need of drug treatment were also those most ready to change their drug use. The findings serve as a reminder of the need and desire for interventions for drug abuse among the police detainee population, and have implications for the development of intervention strategies aimed at reducing drug use among offender populations.