Priti Patel’s war on cocaine: Home Secretary orders experts to help combat Britain’s spiralling drug use by ‘white males under 30’
- Priti Patel has asked Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs to focus on issue
- Home Secretary said increase in use has been driven by white males under 30
- Her plea comes after an independent report earlier this year found cocaine was as readily available as takeaway pizza largely due to county lines drugs gangs
Priti Patel has ordered the Government’s official drug experts to help combat Britain’s cocaine epidemic.
The Home Secretary wants a plan to cut spiralling use of the Class A drug.
Cocaine abuse is growing, particularly among white men under 30 – with the largest increases in the South West and East Midlands.
In a letter to Professor Owen Bowden-Jones, the chairman of the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs (ACMD), Mrs Patel said: ‘I would… be grateful for the ACMD’s considered attention to this area of work, focusing on the following two questions.
‘Why do some young people start using powder cocaine, and why do some of those continue to use it into adulthood?
Home Secretary Priti Patel has ordered the Government’s official drug experts to help combat UK’s cocaine epidemic in a written letter to the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs
‘How could we use this insight to prevent young people using powder cocaine for the first time, and divert them from ongoing use?’
Ms Patel wrote that cocaine use has increased across a wide range of demographic groups, but much of the increase in the number of users has been driven by white males aged under 30.
An independent report for the Home Office by Professor Dame Carol Black in February found that hard drugs including cocaine were as easy to obtain as a takeaway pizza.
Violent county lines gangs – widely reported by the Daily Mail – have usurped local dealers in most parts of the country.
They are now flooding Britain’s streets with ‘abundant’ supplies of drugs, said Dame Carol, former president of the Royal College of Physicians.
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