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NCJ Number: 156066 Find in a Library
Title: Polydrug Use and Self Control Among Men and Women in Prisons
Journal: Journal of Drug Education  Volume:24  Issue:4  Dated:(1994)  Pages:333-350
Author(s): G Kassebaum; S M Chandler
Date Published: 1994
Page Count: 18
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article describes research conducted in a western State to examine the patterns of alcohol and drug use as well as self- concepts of incarcerated adult offenders in relation to age, gender, and ethnicity.
Abstract: The purpose of the research was to estimate the extent and variety of alcohol and drug use in the prison population and design a data-collection instrument. Individual interviews with every newly admitted sentenced felon (157 men and 39 women) were conducted. Inmates reported nearly universal alcohol use and marijuana use, as well as extensive use of cocaine, crack, heroin, crystal methamphetamine, and using various other schedule drugs, usually in combination with alcohol and other drugs. The problem for the interviewers was not how to elicit admissions of drug use but how to categorize the large number of combinations. Polydrug use, often in combination with alcohol, was the rule, not the exception. Starting, switching and quitting, and combining or substituting drugs was reported by the majority of inmates. Although patterns varied, it was difficult to identify a special class of drug addicts among the inmates. The findings suggest that large percentages of prison inmates are frequent substance abusers, perceive problems from substance use, but are often not interested in drug treatment in prison. Many inmates who were apparently suitable for alcohol or drug treatment did not seek treatment. This was not influenced by the extent of drug use or experience with previous treatment. Female inmates were apparently more often and more extensively involved in drug abuse than male inmates. This is problematic because there are few specialized treatment or training programs for women offenders. Correctional agencies must attempt to develop effective and affordable strategies for dealing with drug use. 9 tables and 14 references
Main Term(s): Corrections
Index Term(s): Drug use; Inmate characteristics; Inmate statistics; Self concept
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