This article is a continuation in a series about drug abuse and addiction relates to other types of crimes. In this series, we will examine the connections that have been shown to stem, at least presumably, from effects of addictive properties, whether physical or psychological. We will also look at sociological aspects that may play a factor and what is being done to help reduce the effects that substance abuse has on our society.
There is an extreme link between drug use and prostitution
Although many statistics about the relationship between drugs and crime vary from country to country, due to different cultural and sociological factors, there is one universal connection that persist all around the globe. Prostitution is often heavily linked to drug abuse at alarmingly high rates. Some studies have posted estimates that show that as high as 85% of all prostitutes suffer from addiction. The reason for this is that many addicts are forced to turn to the underground sex trade to financially support their drug habits. Interestingly, these individuals are victims of violent crimes at much higher rates than the general population, with over 80% of all prostitutes reporting being physically assaulted, although many of these assaults have gone unreported.
Many prisoners are nonviolent drug offenders
This is a controversial issue that persists in America, today. Nearly 25% of the United States’ prison population is comprised of non-violent drug offenders, whose only crime was using an illicit substance. With America having the highest rate of incarcerated citizens in the world, this issue has been a political hotspot, recently, with many on both sides of the aisle saying that we need to take drastic measures to reduce this number, as it is a drain on the economic system, as well as on the livelihoods of millions of Americans.
Other social factors exist
When looking at the statistics of crimes caused by drug users, it is important to recognize that these numbers are not necessarily proof of causation. The root of crime is a complex issue. Many times, what is more important is the social factors that surround a perpetrator. Issues of economic class, race, and mental health can be greater contributors to the existence of crime than drug abuse. Because of this, more research is needed to determine the causative effects of drugs on the world of crime.
This article is continued in part 3.