Drug Abuse in the Global Village
Drug Abuse in the Americas

Costs and Consequences of Drug Abusers in the Caribbean

In 1990, there was a total of 5 cocaine related deaths reported. Two were the result of overdoses (U.N. 1990).

            Cocaine abuse is believed to have lead to a marked increase in the incidence of AIDS cases and HIV infection. AIDS incidence rates per 100,000 increased from 15.5 in 1985, to 38.1 in 1988 and to 67.7 in 1989. There is also an increase in violence, which is attributed to teenage gangs engaged in anti-social and violent behavior at schools and on the streets. Illegal possession of hand guns related to cocaine problems was also observed (U.N. 1990; Bahamas Ministry of Health 1990).

            Unemployment is considered a prime cause of the islands drug abuse problem. Official reports indicate high levels of concern relating to cocaine abuse (EIU 1991-1992).


No information reported by 31st December 1993.


Although suspected drug related deaths have occurred, no hard data is available to support this claim (U.N. 1990).

            A reported increase in crime (robberies and violent crimes) by drug abusers is attributed to the increased abuse of cocaine, "basuco" (coca paste) and crack (U.N. 1988).