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NCJ Number: 156244 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Narcotic Addiction: A Changing Scene?
Author(s): D Nurco; I H Cisin; M B Balter
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 29
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute on Drug Abuse
Bethesda, MD 20892-9561
University of Maryland
Baltimore, MD 21217
Grant Number: DA-01375
Sale Source: University of Maryland
School of Medicine
1229 West Mount Royal Avenue
Baltimore, MD 21217
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study explored changes in the drug addiction scene in an era of rapid social change; the focus was on how the drug addict population changed over time, based on a sample of 499 subjects selected from a roster of male drug abusers first known to the Baltimore City Police Department's Narcotic Squad between 1952 and 1976.
Abstract: Interview information permitted confirmation of addiction status and addict reclassification into incidence cohorts. The final sample included 238 drug addicts (103 whites and 135 blacks). Data confirmed the predominance of blacks in the addict population. Differences were observed between background characteristics of blacks and whites who were attracted into addiction, but little variations occurred in such characteristics when each racial group of addicts was considered separately. For both races, persons who entered addiction later in the 25-year period were more likely than those who became addicted earlier to have had contacts with juvenile authorities and to have acknowledged criminal activity prior to first drug use. Black addicts appeared to be more successful than white addicts in coping with the problems of addiction. The largest proportion of black addicts had virtually uninterrupted careers in the use of drugs, primarily heroin. They were skillful at avoiding incarceration and appeared to function well in a lifestyle that involved obtaining income from illegal sources to purchase heroin. Among white addicts, there was an increase over time in the proportion classified in a pattern involving addiction less than 50 percent of the 10-year career and incarceration for most of the remaining time. This trend suggested that police became more active or that later addicts were more inept than addicts of earlier years. Both the average black addict and the average white addict received most of their income from illegal sources. Changes in characteristics of addicts over the 25- year period, particularly in the distributional composition of addict career types, suggested a dynamic system requiring continued surveillance of the active addict population. 6 references, 9 tables, and 1 figure
Main Term(s): Drug dependence
Index Term(s): Black/African Americans; Black/White Crime Comparisons; Caucasian/White Americans; Crime patterns; Drug abuse; Drug offenders; Heroin; Male offenders; Maryland; Social change
Note: DCC
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