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  • Lauri Beekmann

One in four young people between 16-19 years feel that cocaine is as common at parties as alcohol

Camilla Lunde Leder forebygging Blå Kors Blå Kors
Camilla Lunde

30.04.2024 - A recent survey conducted by Ipsos on behalf of Blue Cross Norway (Blå Kors) maps young people's attitudes towards narcotic drugs. It shows that an increasing number of youths experience cocaine as common at parties. Blå Kors is very concerned about this development.

"We have recently seen a worrying increase in the use and normalization of cocaine among young people. There is an urgent need for preventive measures," says Camilla Lunde, the leader of prevention at Blå Kors.

Social status and pressure The respondents in the survey further indicate that they feel pressured to use various drugs, ranging from alcohol to cocaine and MDMA. Additionally, 24 percent say that using illegal drugs at parties can increase one's social status.

14 percent say they feel pressured to try cocaine. 16 percent say the same about cannabis.

"The findings from the survey testify to an increasing normalization of cocaine and other illegal drugs, and Blå Kors believes it is urgent to implement the following preventive measures:

Important preventive measures: The police must have good tools to detect illegal drug use, and sufficient resources for prevention.

We need more venues in society where children and young people have access to attractive and drug-free offers. We must also increase the adult resources in places where children and young people frequent.

Drug education in schools must be prioritized and strengthened. The work must start early and continue over several years. We need to ensure that young people are aware of the facts, dangers, and consequences of use.

Parents and guardians are very important role models for children and have a significant influence on children's development. Guardians must follow up and dare to have conversations about drug use. They must not be naive when it comes to their own children and drug use. Parents and guardians must be clearly present in the lives of the youth.

Young people need caring adults. Many young people feel pressured to use illegal drugs because their friends do it. We who are around the youth, whether as guardians, teachers, sports leaders, or others must talk with the youth about friends' influence, peer pressure, and how to resist it.

Key figures from the survey 24% say they experience an increase in social status by using illegal drugs at parties. 3 out of 5 believe it is easier to try cocaine/MDMA once they have tried another illegal drug first. 14% feel pressured to try cocaine/MDMA. 58% would not report to an adult if someone used cocaine at a party.

About the survey: The survey was conducted by Ipsos on behalf of Blå Kors. A total of 339 people aged 16-19 years participated in the survey, which highlights young people's attitudes towards illegal drugs. The responses give us a picture of what is happening in society and confirm trends and developments we have so far experienced. The survey shows good geographic distribution.



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