The annual Global Drug Survey (GDS) for 2017 has recently been launched and Scottish Drugs Forum is encouraging participation by people living in Scotland.
GDS runs the biggest survey of drug and alcohol use in the world, with over 100,000 people completing each of the 2015 and 2016 surveys.
This year’s survey is anonymous, confidential and will run for eight weeks. This year the survey will ask the usual range of questions on drug use (including alcohol use), however it will have a specific focus on the following topics.
Cannabis: How is cannabis being used to treat medical conditions across the world? What conditions are being treated and how and what types are people using? How do cannabis users think cannabis laws should be changed and where laws have changed how has this impacted on stigma and help seeking?
New Psychoactive Substances (NPS): In countries that have recently banned NPS (for example the UK and NZ) – what has happened to their use in the general population and where are people choosing to get them from?
Hallucinogenics: How common is a bad trip on acid or magic mushrooms and what makes a trip bad?
Ecstasy/MDMA: Does the use of drug testing services make drug use safer? Why are women more at risk of MDMA related harm then men
Ayahausca: Commercial exploitation or a short cut to spiritual enlightenment?
Alcohol: One third of drinkers wants to drink less but what help do they want to achieve this goal?
Vaping: What drugs other than cannabis are being ‘vaped’ and how does ‘vaping’ change drug risks and drug related pleasures?
The Dark Net: Does easy access to good quality drugs through the dark net actually change how people use – do they use more or less, does their risk of harm go up of down?
Scottish Drugs Forum CEO, David Liddell stated:
“The Global Drug Survey is a useful tool in gaining some insight into what is a poorly understood phenomenon – drug use by people who may never feel the need to engage with health or treatment services.
“The fact that people do not engage with services does not mean that their drug use is necessarily harm free to themselves and others. The survey also throws up some interesting information on users’ knowledge and perceptions which is useful in framing key messages to drug users in terms of reducing harm.