Drug use monitoring in Australia: 2007 annual report on drug use among police detainees


The Drug Use Monitoring in Australia (DUMA) program has been in operation since 1999. Over the years it has provided police, policymakers, criminal justice practitioners and other professionals with systematic empirical data on illegal drug use among people detained and brought to a police station or watch-house. With the additional funding obtained in 2007, DUMA expanded from nine sites to 10 sites throughout Australia - Adelaide City and Elizabeth in South Australia; Bankstown and Parramatta in New South Wales; Brisbane City and Southport in Queensland; East Perth in Western Australia; Footscray in Victoria; and both Darwin and the new site Alice Springs in the Northern Territory.

DUMA significantly adds to the evidence base by providing a reasonable and independent indicator of drug-related crime within a specific area. DUMA allows the identification of changes in drug use to be detected within a relatively short time span, as well as monitoring trends over a longer period. This provides law enforcement with valuable information regarding possible shifts in trends and patterns in drug use and related criminal activity.

This report presents both self-report and urinalysis data from participating detainees for the calendar year 2007. It provides an overview of the characteristics of the detainees at each site, including self-reported drug use, prior criminal behaviour and treatment history.