The survey, in which 101 students took part also shows that 37 per cent of respondents answered that 30 to 100 per cent of their friends and acquaintances that study at the University of York, use or have used drugs while at university. The largest college representation of this group was Vanbrugh, who accounted for 39 per cent.
A survey conducted by Nouse into drug culture at the University has revealed that 66 per cent of students at the University of York either disagree or mostly disagree with the statement: “The University does enough to raise awareness about the effects of drug usage.”
The University currently offers support for drug users through its Open Door Team, whose insufficient provision of services was criticised during the Vice Chancellor’s Question Time on 29 February. The Vice Chancellor Koen Lamberts, acknowledged that there are currently not enough appointments to meet demand.
In response to the statement: “Drugs are a problem at the University of York,” 89 per cent of student replies mostly disagreed or disagreed with this statement.
David Duncan, Registrar and Secretary, commented: “I think your survey is right in concluding that there isn’t a significant drug problem at York.
“However, working with the student associations and external agencies, we will continue to try to raise awareness of the risks associated with drug taking and to support those affected by it.”
A student from Derwent College said: “I don’t think the University do enough to address the issue of drug awareness. York isn’t one of the worst universities for drugs but usage is still quite potent among some areas of the student population and the University should do more to ensure that people are being safe.
“The first step undoubtedly should be to encourage people to say no and the second should be to offer advice to those who for whatever reason say yes, on how they should monitor their use and look after themselves and others around them. Advising people to say no is one thing but not recognising the needs of those who say yes is negligence.”
According to findings from the 2014/15 crime survey for England and Wales, drug usage among 16 to 59 year olds has decreased, when compared to 10 years ago.
A foreign student from within the EU raised concerns about the use of the class A drug ecstasy in the UK, which they allege is far more common and ‘mainstream’ when compared to their country of origin.
35 per cent of students claim that they have been offered drugs on campus and a greater 39 per cent have been offered drugs on a night out in York. Between January and December 2015, 255 drug-related crimes occurred in the York City and East region, which encompasses Heslington and the University of York.
Scott Dawson, YUSU Community and Wellbeing Officer stated: “I welcome Nouse’s research. While drug use might not have been identified as a major problem at York, research suggests that many students may decide to experiment with illegal drugs while at university.
It’s important that students have the right information to be able to make informed decisions and YUSU recognises the need for improvement with awareness-raising and information about support services.
“YUSU is working with the University to improve links with drug and alcohol service providers in the city to both develop our own resources and information on this issue and to ensure students have access to specialist advice and support when they need it.”
94 per cent of respondents were undergraduate students, 3 per cent were Masters students and 3 per cent were PhD students.
For support with addiction, contact the University’s Open Door Team at [email protected] or on 01904 322140. Alternatively, FRANK offer confidential drugs advise on 0300 123 6600.