Number of drug abusers drops

May 24, 2024

The total number of reported drug abusers was 1,666 in the first quarter of 2024, compared with 1,863 for the same period in 2023, the Action Committee Against Narcotics (ACAN) announced today.


However, the ACAN pointed out that the figures tend to show greater volatilities in the first quarter of a year and it will closely monitor the situation in the remaining quarters of 2024 as it continues to carry out its anti-drug work.


According to figures of the Central Registry of Drug Abuse, the number of reported young drug abusers aged under 21 for the first quarter of the year was 259.


The most common types of drugs abused among this category of drug abusers was cannabis, cocaine, and ketamine, commonly known as “K”.


Figures from law enforcement agencies showed that the number of persons arrested for drug offences in the first quarter of 2024 was 767, with 62 of them being young drug abusers aged under 21. 


The ACAN expressed grave concern about the situation of cannabis abuse. In particular, cannabis was the most common type of drugs abused by reported young drug abusers aged under 21 in the first quarter of 2024, with over half of them taking this drug.


ACAN Chairman Donald Li made it clear that cannabis is addictive.


"Some youngsters consider taking cannabis trendy or a so-called 'chill' lifestyle, and even think that the legalisation of cannabis is a world trend. Such thinking has ignored the medical evidence that smoking cannabis is harmful to health,” he said.


To raise public awareness of the harms of cannabis, especially awareness among young people, the Security Bureau’s Narcotics Division (ND) will launch a new TV Announcement in the Public Interest (API) this year and the corresponding radio API to disseminate the message that "Cannabis is a drug". 


The ND noted that since travelling has resumed normal, drug dealers often post recruitment advertisements on dubious websites and social media accounts with offers of free trips and high remuneration to lure people into drug trafficking.


The ND will step up publicity and education to remind the public to stay vigilant and not to fall into drug traps driven by greed. 


As the summer holiday is approaching, the ND also reminds people to say no to drugs at all times when travelling to other places.


When coming across oil and relevant products for heat-not-burn cigarettes or electronic cigarettes, the public should pay careful attention to determine if these products contain cannabis, cannabidiol, emerging new drugs, and other harmful substances or poison, and should not try them or bring them back to Hong Kong. 

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