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Drug addiction 'society's scourge' — poll

June 26, 2014, 16:42 UTC+3 MOSCOW
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MOSCOW, June 26. /ITAR-TASS/. Drug addiction is the problem of the society in general, not of separate individuals, poll findings suggest in a survey of Russian public attitudes.

Forty percent of "highly educated" poll respondents said drug addiction was a social disease, prompting 28% to rate addicts as a danger to the public and calling for their isolation from the community.

Only 3% of those questioned said taking drugs was an issue for the individual, say findings from the RussianPublic Opinion Research Center (WCIOM). And without medical aid, those struggling would fail to beat the scourge, say nearly a third of those questioned.

Addiction is somebody's else's problem, said the 68% reckoning no one in their close circle was hooked, though this had slipped from 73% saying so in a poll 10 years ago. Eleven percent said certain friends and relatives were habitual users.

An overwhelming majority of 89% said unlimited retail of soft drugs, tobacco and alcohol was unacceptable, while only seven percent believed soft drugs were harmless to health.

Capital punishment for drug dealers found almost as many supporters as opponents (46 and 43% respectively).

The measure is backed by people aged 45-59 (53%), respondents with primary education (55%) and people who know drug addicts in person (54%). Younger respondents (54% of 18- 24-year-olds) found such punishment too severe.

Polling was conducted among 1,600 residents of 130 localities in 42 regions on June 21 - 22. Statistical error does not exceed 3.4%.

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