World Drug Day, or International Day against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking, takes place on 26th June 2023.
It’s a global event organised by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and has been running since 1987.
Designed to strengthen action and cooperation with the objective of an international society free from drug abuse, UNODC wants to highlight that the stigma and discrimination associated with drug misuse can prevent individuals from getting the help they need.
Instead, the organisation wants the world to take a more people-centred approach, focusing on human rights and compassion.
The theme for this year’s World Drug Day is ‘People first: stop stigma and discrimination, strengthen prevention.’ The campaign aims to raise awareness of the importance of treating drug users with compassion and respect and without judgement, as well as prioritising prevention and offering alternatives to punishment.
Drug misuse in the UK
Around 1 in 11 adults in the UK aged 16-59 and 1 in 5 adults aged 16-24 have admitted using drugs.
Cannabis remains the most-used drug in England and Wales, with cocaine and nitrous oxide close behind. Additionally, of those people who reported being drug users, those in higher income households (earning £52,000 or more per year) were more likely to use Class A drugs compared to those in lower income households (earning less than £10,400 per year).
Furthermore, a national youth charity recently published a report that found drug use amongst 16-25 year olds has dramatically increased, with 1 in 5 admitting to taking drugs or using alcohol to escape problems in their lives.
The signs and symptoms of substance misuse
As a leading UK drug and alcohol testing laboratory, we understand all too well the impact that substance misuse can have on people’s day-to-day lives and these rising drug use statistics highlight a growing problem in the UK.
For this reason, it is important that people can spot the signs of substance misuse, in order to get a friend, colleague or family member the help they need.
The most common signs of a person misusing drugs include:
- Changes in physical appearance such as sudden weight loss or gain, or a lack of personal hygiene
- Changes in behaviour including wanting more privacy
- Difficulties at work including declining performance and attendance
- A lack of energy
- Defensive behaviour when asked about substance use
- Changes in appetite
- Spending more money than usual or asking to borrow more money
If you are worried about someone you know and you think they might be misusing substances, it is important to approach the conversation calmly and emphasise that you simply want to support them in getting the help they need.
Where can I buy a drug test?
AlphaBiolabs is one of the UK’s leading drug testing laboratories, offering 100% accurate, reliable drug testing for members of the public, the legal profession, and the workplace sector.
Our UKAS-accredited laboratory is equipped to test a variety of samples for the presence of drugs and their metabolites, including urine, oral fluid (saliva), hair and nails.
We have also invested in the very latest technology in our toxicology laboratory, employing top scientists, so you can be confident of receiving results you can trust.
Here are a few examples of who might need a drug test:
- Members of the public who have concerns about a loved one misusing drugs, and want a test for peace of mind
- Family law professionals and social workers handling child welfare and custody disputes
- Businesses implementing workplace drug testing
- Private individuals who require a legally-instructed drug test for an official matter (e.g. custody or divorce proceedings, industrial tribunals and other legal issues)
- Contractors, freelancers, consultants, or new employees who need a drug test for work
Unsure which drug test is best for you? Call our friendly, knowledgeable Customer Services team now on 0333 600 1300 or email email@example.com to discuss your requirements.
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