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Statistics on the impact of substance abuse
to society

Untreated substance abuse increases the cost of every state's criminal justice system; Medicaid; child welfare; juvenile justice; and mental health systems, totaling $77.9 Billion dollars in 1998.

—Source: CASA Study, Sept 1998

Each American paid $277 per year in state taxes to deal with the burden of untreated substance abuse and addiction in various social and criminal programs, and just $10 per year for prevention and treatment.

—Source: CASA Study, Sept 1998

For every dollar states spend on substance abuse prevention, treatment and research, they spend $26 shoveling up the wreckage via criminal justice and social programs.

—Source: CASA Study, Sept 1998

A Pew Research Center survey in February 2000 found that three out of four Americans believe "we are losing the drug war." 52% to 35% said drug use "should be treated as a disease, not a crime."

—Source: Pew Study, Washington Post, Aug 2001

State prisons in 1998 held 236,800 people convicted on drug charges - 57% more than in 1990.

—Source: Pew Study, Washington Post, Aug 2001

A 1998 estimate from the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University estimates that 70% to 85% of all state prison inmates - not just those convicted on drug charges - need treatment, but only 13% get it.

—Source: NCASA/Columbia, Washington Post, Aug 2001

A 2001 report by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse found that in 1998, states spent $81.3 billion dollars to deal with the problem of substance abuse, amounting to 13 cents for every state budget dollar.

—Source: National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University

2001 Crime and drug addiction often occur in tandem: Between 50 and 70 percent of arrestees are addicted to illegal drugs.

—Alan Leshner, Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Published Spring 2001.

Issues in Science and Technology data shows that if addicted offenders are provided with well-structured drug treatment while under criminal justice control, their recidivism rates can be reduced by 50 to 60 percent for subsequent drug use and by more than 40 percent for further criminal behavior.

—Alan Leshner, Director of the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Published Spring 2001. Issues in Science and Technology

 
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