Responding to drug use and related problems in recreational settings

Series type: Thematic papers


Drug and alcohol use in recreational settings are linked to a range of health and social problems. These include acute health problems, such as unconsciousness and unintentional injury, aggressive behaviour and violence, unsafe and unwanted sex, and driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs. In the 2009–12 EU drugs action plan and, more recently, through the adoption in 2010 of Council conclusions in this area, the EU has addressed drug and alcohol use in places where young people gather to socialise and dance. Reflecting these conclusions, this paper summarises some of the approaches used today to prevent and reduce the health and social risks associated with the use of illicit drugs and alcohol in recreational settings.

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Table of contents

  • Introduction
  • The need for a balanced and evidence-based approach
  • Prevention at the user level
  • Environmental strategies
  • Training of staff
  • Interventions involving stakeholders
  • Policing and law enforcement measures
  • Conclusions
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