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Inhalant users: juvenile and adult incarcerated populations at special risk

Australian Institute of Criminology, Jane C Maxwell
15 November 2002 -

Jane C. Maxwell, Ph.D.
Research Scientist, University of Texas at Austin


Youths entering Texas reform schools and adults entering the Texas prison system report higher lifetime prevalence of use of inhalants than their peers in the general population. They also were significantly more likely than their non-inhaling peers in the corrections systems to have committed more property, violent, and drug crimes in the year before incarceration; to have used cocaine or heroin in the past year, to have more alcohol and drug problems; to have belonged to a gang, to have sold marijuana or cocaine; to have been physically abused as children, to be depressed, to have more mental health problems, and to be at greater risk of HIV/AIDS. These finding are based on surveys of 1,026 youths entering Texas reforms schools in 2000-2001 and 3,525 adults entering Texas prisons between 1998 and 2000.

Jane C Maxwell, Ph.D., is a research scientist in the Centre for Social Work Research at the University of Texas at Austin, where she is co-principal investigator on a grant from the National Institute on Drug Abuse and is director of the Centre for Excellence in Epidemiology of the Gulf Coast Addiction Technology Transfer Centre. She is a member of the National Council of the federal Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Institute on Drug Abuse's Community Epidemiology Work Group and Border Epidemiology Work Group, and several national expert panels. She has been a Commonwealth National Drug Strategy Research Fellow, a Visiting Research Fellow at the Centre for Accident Research and Road Safety, Queensland University of Technology, and a Visiting Scholar at St. John's College, University of Queensland.

Her areas of expertise include needs assessment, client data systems, data analysis, statistical methods, and survey methodology. Prior to her move to the University of Texas, Dr. Maxwell was chief of research at the Texas Commission on Alcohol and Drug Abuse, and her research group was recognized as a leader nationally in substance abuse surveys, collection of primary and secondary data related to substance abuse, and the monitoring of drug trends and patterns in Texas, in the US, and internationally.

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