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Curtin University
School of Psychology and Speech Pathology

Attitudes To Drug Dependence

Participant Information Sheet

Thank you for your interest in this research.

Please be advised that data collection has now ended, and the researchers have moved on to analysing and writing up their results.

Summary of Results - Public Attitudes Towards Drug Dependence

This research investigated public attitudes towards helping people with drug dependence. The study investigated factors which lead to a decision to help or not help people with drug dependence, and compared attitudes to parents and non-parents, and attitudes to legal and illicit drug dependence. The scenario about Jessica which you read was one of four, either referring to Jessica as a single woman or a single mother, and dependent on either alcohol or amphetamines.

Results

Overall, attitudes towards helping were positive, with no differences between attitudes towards parents and non-parents or illicit and licit drugs. In addition, results showed that people who perceived Jessica as responsible for her drug dependence were less likely to think she deserved help than people who thought she was not responsible for being dependent.

These results suggest that, contrary to common perceptions, the public hold positive attitudes towards the provision of help for drug dependent people. There is a perception that attitudes are negative, resulting in policy-maker reluctance to provide drug services, and individual reluctance to access these services. This study’s evidence of public support may encourage policy makers to implement evidence-based treatment and harm reduction interventions.

Thank you for considering participating in my study.

My name is Tanzi Collinge, and I am conducting this research project as part of my Honours degree in Psychology at Curtin University of Technology. With support from the National Drug Research Institute I am investigating public attitudes to drug dependence. It is my hope that this research will assist in policy decisions and the development of interventions which may reduce drug related harm in our society.

If you agree to participate, the link below will direct you to a 5 minute online survey. You will be presented with a short scenario about a woman who is drug dependent, and invited to answer questions on your opinion of her situation. Upon completion of this survey you will be given the opportunity to enter a draw for one of two US$100 gift vouchers, your choice of Amazon or iTunes.

This survey is completely anonymous, with no identifying information collected, and your responses are completely confidential. Participation in this research is entirely voluntary, and you can withdraw from the study at any time. I will analyse survey responses at a group level, and present the results in my Honours dissertation, and possibly in academic papers and conferences. A summary of research findings will also be available if you wish to read it.

If you have any questions about this study please feel free to contact me at tanzi.collinge@student.curtin.edu.au, or my supervisors Dr Lynne Roberts at Lynne.Roberts@curtin.edu.au, and Dr Steve Allsop at S.Allsop@curtin.edu.au.

If you feel any concern about the drug use of either yourself or someone close to you, please don't hesitate to contact Counselling Online (24hrs) at www.counsellingonline.org.au, or contact your local government for telephone counselling numbers. General drug information is available at http://www.drugs.health.gov.au.

If you are over the age of 18, and would like to participate, please follow this link to my survey.

Thank you for your time!

This study has been approved by the School of Psychology and Speech Pathology Ethics Committee and by the Curtin University HREC, (Approval Number Psych and SP 2010 09). Should you have any concerns about the conduct of this project please contact the Committee either by writing to the School of Psychology and Speech Pathology, Curtin University of Technology, GPO Box U1987, Perth, 6845, by telephoning 9266 7182, or emailing l.steed@curtin.edu.au

Thank you for your interest in this research,
Tanzi Collinge.