Giving Up on Drugs: Homeless Young People and Self-Reported Problematic Drug Use

People typically regard Jamie as being "on the streets" but to him living in a bushland squat means he is "not quite homeless". In his words, he is "homeless but not roofless". Jamie is 17 and has been living on the streets on or off since he was 12. His parents were abusive and Jamie has lived in foster care or with his grandmother for most of his life. After he left home, a friend taught him how to live by stealing cars, "doing burgs," and holding people up at knifepoint. He got into trouble over drugs with bikies when he was 12--he says he didn't realize what he "was playing with". He started smoking marijuana at 11 and has used heroin a few times (his parents' drug of choice), ecstasy once, and also coke, speed and acid among other drugs. Speed is the only drug he has used at problematic levels. (abstract fromthe article)

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Contemporary Drug Problems