Anti-cocaine campaign takes a new form

Anti-cocaine campaign takes a new formThe `just say no' approach to cocaine will be given a new shape after it being abandoned in a new government campaign and paranoia, talking nonsense and impotence will be highlighted.

In a new move, with field workers going to pubs and clubs to highlight the dangers of cocaine, the message will be taken straight to young people on nights out around major towns and cities.

Impurity of the drug will be another major issue that will be highlighted as street cocaine often contains just 5 per cent of the actual drug and other powders and cheap dentistry drug lignocaine is normally mixed with it.

The government figures state that with 7.8 per cent of 16 to 24 year olds admitting having taken cocaine, campaigners insist the abstinence approach to drug campaigns has failed.

Normally youngsters who try it on nights often go unreported that means the actual number of people taking the drug can be higher than reported.

They hope that the drug will no longer carry the image it does among youngsters if side-effects of the drug, such as impotence and the risk of embarrassing themselves by talking nonsense are highlighted.

Nick Smith, who helped formulate the campaign as manager of Edinburgh Alcohol and Drug Partnership, said, "Young people often see cocaine as a harmless, even glamorous drug, a problem that is compounded by its falling cost and increased levels of availability across the country."