Report shows drug use among youth in six South American countries

Relatório Drogas Jovens

6 May 2010 - The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the Inter-American Drug Abuse Control Commission (CICAD), body of the Organization of American States (OAS), launched in March, during The 53rd Session of the Commission on Narcotic Drugs, in Vienna, the second edition of a report that points consumption rates of licit and illicit drugs among high school students, with data from Argentina, Bolivia, Chile, Ecuador, Peru and Uruguay.

The report shows that, in general, almost 70% of students had consumed alcohol at least once in lifetime, although there are differences between countries, ranging from 80% (Ecuador and Uruguay) to 43% (Bolivia). In relation to tobacco, Chile has the highest prevalence (32%) and Bolivia the lowest (12%).

Among illegal drugs, marijuana is the most common drug, with 11% of students having experienced it. Prevalence ranges from 4% in Peru to 23% in Chile. On average, 2.2% of high school students have tried cocaine, ranging from 1.4% in Peru to 3.5% in Uruguay. Coca paste shows a prevalence of 1.4%, ranging from 0.6% in Ecuador to 2.8% in Chile.

Statistical data comparison of different countries aims to obtain more detailed information about drugs and phenomena associated with it, such as mortality, crime and trafficking. In addition, the report will allow each country to have the necessary data to observe the trend of consumption of various substances and turn the combat in schools more effective.

The report was produced by partnership between UNODC and CICAD. Besides offering technical and financial support to South American countries under the guidance of national strategies and policies on drugs, theses institutions seek to expand the information on the drug consumption problem in these countries and share policies and preventive care applied.

Access the full content of the report (in Spanish).