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Will Godfrey Will Godfrey

Graphic: The Vast Majority of Illegal Drug Use Is Not Problematic

Tempted to think of the use of (illegal) drugs as a generally problematic activity? Think again.

16 Substance

Media and government scaremongering tells us otherwise, but the large majority of people who use illegal drugs worldwide are not “problem users,” as defined by the not-terribly-progressive UN Office of Drugs and Crime. This is true of all the world’s popular illegal drugs, including so-called “hard” drugs.

Clearly, this knowledge shouldn’t detract from our desire to help the minority of drug users who do become addicted, and to promote safer drug use in general. But it should be uppermost in our minds—despite the continual “noise” pushing a different message—when we consider how societies best approach and regulate drugs.

This infographic by Transform, a UK-based drug policy reform organization, is a welcome reminder of a reality that is too often overlooked.