Publications & Presentations


Drugs and Substances: Views from a Latino Community

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The last three decades have seen an increase in the study of licit and illicit substance use and abuse. Very few studies, however, have been conducted to show the views of minority people on what substance abuse really is and how it affects their families and communities, although connections have often been made between crime and minority involvement in drug trafficking, use and abuse. This exploratory study presents an attempt to explore Latino or Hispanic people's perceptions and attitudes regarding the use and abuse of both licit and illicit substances, in a Texas City. Further, it is set up to examine individuals' views on drugs' definitions, their use in their community, and their effects on abusive and violent behavior in the family. The findings indicate that although individuals in this Hispanic community hold views on drugs similar to those in other communities, they nonetheless place most importance on the impact of the use of legal substances (alcohol and tobacco) on problem creation.