People in Scotland needed for world’s biggest annual drug survey

The world’s biggest annual online survey on recreational substance use has launched and is looking for people to take part and share their experiences confidentially.

The Global Drug Survey 2020 is hoping to be the biggest yet, with over 130,000 people across the world taking part in 2019.

Over the last eight years, the Global Drug Survey has been asking people to share details of their recreational substance use through filling out a confidential and encrypted online survey – the findings of which are used to develop harm reduction interventions in response to new trends.

Scottish Drugs Forum are encouraging people in Scotland to take part so that a clear picture can be developed around recreational substance use in the country.

Each year, the survey focuses on a number of key topics and this year it includes questions on some of the major public health and scientific issues that have been making waves over the last 12 months.

These include:

  • The use of psychedelics as medicine for psychiatric illnesses
  • Regrets around drinking alcohol and advice to help modify risky behaviours
  • Experiences with medical cannabis and/or CBD oil
  • Whether drugs have been used at a club or festival
  • The provision of security or medical services and whether they have hindered or increased safety
  • The dosage levels of MDMA

Katy MacLeod, SDF’s National Training and Development Officer, said:

“The Global Drugs Survey is a useful resource for helping us to understand the behaviours and possible needs of people who may not access drug treatment services.

“The findings are of considerable help to academics, commissioners and those involved in provision of harm reduction information as signifiers of where attention could be focussed.

“It’s really important that people in Scotland fill out the survey. The greater the number of Scottish responses, the more accurate a picture that can be developed of recreational and medicinal substance uses trends in the country which require careful observation in order to ensure advice and support is available to people who need it.

“By taking the survey you’ll be helping to make recreational drug use in Scotland less harmful and help to create policy and responses that focus on substance use as a health issue.”

If you have used alcohol or any other drug in the last 12 months and want to help society have an honest conversation about substance use, then please take 20-30 minutes and share your experience in GDS2020 now at