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Denver: On the Horizon--Reducing Substance Abuse and Addiction

NCJ Number
Date Published
38 pages
This report presents information about the prevalence and the impact of substance abuse and addiction in Denver.
The focus of the report is on how substance abuse affects residents of Denver in terms of health, economic impact, and crime. Policies and programs geared toward curbing substance abuse are also discussed. In terms of health issues, Denver’s population is suffering from higher rates of tobacco use than any other city in the State. Similarly, rates of chronic drinking and binge drinking are significantly higher in Denver than elsewhere in Colorado or any other State. Similarly, pregnant women in Denver have higher alcohol consumption rates than the rest of Colorado. In terms of the impact on crime, substance abusers comprise approximately two-thirds of those arrested in Denver. Close to half of all felony offenders on probation in Denver need treatment for substance abuse problems. The report contends that more of Denver’s monetary resources should be earmarked for substance abuse treatment programs. Further, the criminal justice system is urged to focus on the most flagrant offenders in order to reduce the overall levels of crime perpetrated by substance abusers. Data tables are presented at the conclusion of the report to show findings from 1990 through 2002, in some cases.


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