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Drug abuse, violence link

Losalini Vuki
Tuesday, March 04, 2014

OF the 493 accounted cases of HIV/AIDS in the country, a majority of these are recorded in youths.

And Ministry of Health reports from 2011 also show that of the 1741 sexually transmitted diseases cases in the country, again a majority of those were in their teens.

These were the alarming statistics presented by the National Substance Abuse Advisory Council at Suva Grammar School yesterday.

Speaking at the opening of the week-long Drug Awareness Week, senior health officer of the substance abuse advisory council Josua Naisele also said there was a marked decrease in teenage pregnancy from 2004 to 2011.

"Teenage pregnancy dropped from 1254 to 607. While that is a marked decrease, students remember this â€" the words of a novelist Khaled Hosseini and I quote: 'Marriage can wait, education cannot'," Mr Naisele said.

He also told the students of the very strong relationship between drugs and violence against women.

He said drug abuse was one of the major contributing factors to violence against girls and women, sexually transmitted diseases, criminal activities and non-communicable diseases."

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