There are approximately 12,830,632 people that currently reside in Illinois as of 2010. Drug and alcohol abuse in Illinois is a growing problem.
Alcohol Abuse in Illinois
Out of the 12,830,632 people residing in Illinois, 5,902,091 do not consume alcohol and 3,464,271 report that they drink alcohol once a week or less. So, 9,238,055 people in Illinois do not drink at a level that would be considered unhealthy or abusive. However, 3,207,658 people in Illinois drink enough alcohol on a regular basis to be considered abusers of alcohol.
Getting yourself or someone you love into an alcohol treatment center is vital to recovering from alcohol abuse. There are 75,000 alcohol related deaths each year with an annual economic cost of 184 billion dollars.
Studies on the effects of alcohol advertising on adults in the state of Illinois do not show a strong connection between alcohol advertisements and alcohol consumption. However, studies on the effects of alcohol advertising consistently indicate that children in Illinois that are exposed to these types of advertisements are more likely to have a favorable attitude toward drinking alcohol and are more likely to become underage drinkers and communicate the intention to most likely drink as an adult.
Drug Abuse Statistics in Illinois
Approximately 1,206,079 people in Illinois abuse some type of illegal drug.
A breakdown of this percentage shows the following:
- 214,682 people abuse alcohol and another drug in Illinois
- 194,179 people abuse marijuana in Illinois
- 165,233 people are addicted to or abuse Heroin in Illinois
- 119,402 people smoke cocaine (crack) in Illinois
- 104,929 people use stimulants in Illinois
- 50,655 people use or abuse Opiates (not heroin), in Illinois
- 48,243 people use cocaine (e.g., cocaine powder, not crack cocaine) in Illinois
- 4,824 people in Illinois abuse tranquilizers
- 2,533 people use or abuse PCP in Illinois
- 2,412 people in Illinois are addicted to or abusing sedatives
- 1,327 people use hallucinogens such as lsd or ecstasy in Illinois
- 1,206 people in Illinois abuse Inhalants
- 6,030 people use some other type of illegal drug in the state of Illinois
With such a large number of people in Illinois abusing drugs or alcohol, it is critical to help these individuals get into some type of drug or alcohol treatment program. Addictionca.com provides a wide range of information on all types of drug and alcohol facilities in Illinois. If you need further information, you can call and speak to one of our registered drug counselors for assistance in finding a drug and/or alcohol treatment facility. These services are provided free of charge and the call is toll-free.
Each drug rehab in Illinois has a different approach to the recovery process. Take note of what is important to you, and make decisions based on your personal needs. Keep in mind that in Illinois there are a multitude of treatment options to choose from: outpatient treatment, in patient treatment, support groups, drug rehabilitation, alcohol rehab, drug treatment programs, sober living, halfway houses, long term treatment, short term treatment, counseling, and many more. An individual can become thoroughly confused by asking a half-dozen recovering alcoholics or drug addicts in Illinois how they conquered their abuse of alcohol or drugs; the answers vary although each of them are convincing and emotional. They will cite such diverse approaches as hospitalization, diet, exercise, counseling, sauna's, religion, hypnosis, amino acids and self-help groups. When it comes to successful treatment, only one thing is certain: practically any approach will work for some of the people, some of the time. To put it another way, successful drug rehabilitation is like a designer suit- it's got to be tailor-made for each individual. A great deal of variation exists in the degree of dependence among drug users. The teenager who smokes marijuana three times a week is not as dependent as the thirty year old who has smoked marijuana six times a day for 15 years and has already relapsed after being in two drug rehabilitation centers. It's obvious that these individuals need different approaches to treatment. Similarly, among cocaine users are some who use it in binge fashion, one or two days a month, and others who use it several times each day. Again, different treatment approaches are required for each case.
For those who do not have a long history of drug addiction, an outpatient treatment program might be the correct decision. This form of treatment may be a viable solution for those who have a brief drug addiction history. These individuals might only need the guidance and counseling available though this method of treatment. On the other hand, those who have experienced an extended period of drug addiction, choosing the correct drug rehab program typically means that they should enter into an in patient drug rehab program not located in Illinois. The structure, 24-hour support and change of enviornment made available through this type of drug rehab recovery program can be highly effective for those recovering from a long term drug addiction problem. Most drug rehab professionals in do not recommend any one "best" treatment approach, recognizing the many variations among drug and alcohol abusers. In general, the levels of treatment range from simple and behavioral to complex and medical. The person dependent upon drugs or alcohol may have used the chosen substance for so long that he or she has literally forgotten how to cope with the daily challenges of life; how to have a meaningful, drug-free lifestyle; or how to solve the social or psychological problems that prompted the substance abuse in the first place. In these instances, a very comprehensive approach must be prescribed if the individual is to expect any degree of successful recovery. Once stability is achieved, the "clean" or sober individual can take several steps to enhance recovery and avoid relapse. Among the general recommendations are belonging to a group as a support system, having a religious involvement, practicing good health habits; including proper diet, sleep, and exercise, as well as goal planning and self enhancement projects.
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Illinois State Facts
Illinois Population: 12,830,632
Law Enforcement Officers in Illinois: 42,560
Illinois Prison Population: 61,900
Illinois Probation Population: 141,508
Violent Crime Rate National Ranking: 8
2004 Federal Drug Seizures in Illinois
Cocaine: 2,183.3 kgs.
Heroin: 48.3 kgs.
Methamphetamine: 12.4 kgs.
Marijuana: 6,237.1 kgs.
Ecstasy: 1,826 tablets
Methamphetamine Laboratories: 440 (DEA, state, and local)
Illinois Drug Situation: Chicago is the major transportation hub and distribution center for illegal drugs throughout the Midwest, due to its geographic location and multi-faceted transportation infrastructure. Commercial trucks, passenger vehicles, package delivery services, air packages or couriers, and railways are the most common means traffickers use to transport drugs into Chicago. The majority of the investigations conducted by the Division target one of the following drug trafficking groups: Mexico-based poly-drug organizations, Colombian cocaine and heroin trafficking organizations, and Nigerian/West African groups trafficking in Southeast and Southwest Asian heroin. Chicago-based street gangs such as the Gangster Disciples, Vice Lords, and Latin Kings control the distribution and retail sale of cocaine, heroin, and marijuana. Most law enforcement agencies in Illinois cite the violent crime associated with gang-related drug trafficking as the most serious criminal threat to the state. Violent crime associated with street gangs, while declining in some major urban areas, is increasing in suburban and rural areas as these gangs expand their drug markets.
Cocaine in Illinois: Mexico-based drug trafficking organizations transport metric-ton quantities of cocaine from the Southwest Border to the Chicago Field Division on a regular basis. For example, the Chicago Police Department seized more than 6,000 kilograms of cocaine 2002. Brokers will arrange the transportation at the Southwest Border, and then travel to the Chicago area to oversee the delivery to local cells. Colombian organizations have provided as much as half of the bulk cocaine loads to the brokers as payment in lieu of cash. In Chicago, the drugs are consigned to local cells for distribution. In addition, the Chicago area serves as a distribution hub, supplying other cities throughout the Midwest and as far east as New York City. According to the Drug Abuse Warning Network (DAWN), there were more estimated cocaine-related emergency department mentions in Chicago than any other city monitored by the program for the 3rd year in a row. Cocaine-related deaths in Chicago were the most predominant in 2002, surpassing heroin-related deaths.
Heroin in Illinois: Chicago is unique among American cities in that heroin from all four source areas-South America, Southeast Asia, Southwest Asia, and to a lesser extent Mexico-is available on a consistent basis from year to year. Until recently, virtually all of the white heroin available in the Chicago area was smuggled in by Nigerian/West African criminal groups. But investigative intelligence and Domestic Monitor Program results indicate that South American heroin availability has become more prominent over the past few years. Increased competition amongst these groups has led directly to higher purity levels, lower prices, and widespread availability of the drug. At the retail level, heroin is distributed at numerous open-air drug markets-predominantly on the West Side of the city-that are controlled by street gangs. Street gangs such as the Gangster Disciples, Vice Lords, and Mickey Cobras control the distribution and retail sales heroin throughout the city. Rival gangs have multiple sources of supply for heroin, which contributes to heroin availability. According to the Domestic Monitor Program, the purity of heroin sold on the streets of Chicago has averaged between 20 and 25 percent every year for the past six years, indicative of a steady supply of high-quality heroin. Heroin use is at alarming levels in Chicago, with DAWN reporting that for the fifth consecutive year, there were more estimated heroin-related emergency department mentions in Chicago during 2002 than in any other U.S. city.
Methamphetamine in Illinois: Illinois is faced with a two-pronged methamphetamine problem. First, large quantities of methamphetamine produced by Mexico-based Drug Trafficking Organizations are transported to the state. Mexican drug trafficking organizations transport methamphetamine into Illinois mostly from California and Mexico. They use the same distribution channels used for other drugs. Outlaw motorcycle gangs and Hispanic street gangs control the retail distribution of methamphetamine. Although there is little evidence that methamphetamine is being distributed in the Chicago area, some Mexico-produced methamphetamine destined for markets in other areas transits Chicago. Second, small-scale methamphetamine laboratories have proliferated greatly in many areas of the state. Methamphetamine is the principal drug of concern in the rural areas of central and southern Illinois. The proliferation of small, clandestine methamphetamine laboratories throughout the rural areas force law enforcement to expend a large number of man-hours and resources on combating the lab problem. Most of the laboratories in the southern portion of the state use the Birch production method. The theft of anhydrous ammonia and the improper disposal of laboratory waste is of great concern to the small farming communities. In addition, DEA Operation Mountain Express III uncovered the transshipment of large quantities of pseudoephedrine from Canada, through Chicago, to California, where it was used to produce methamphetamine in "superlabs" managed by Mexican traffickers.
Club Drugs in Illinois: The use of club drugs, and more specifically "designer drugs", has increased sharply throughout the United States and in major cities such as Chicago. "Designer drugs" refer to specific illegal substances such as MDMA, GHB, Ketamine, PCP, and licit pharmaceuticals, most notably the painkiller OxyContin. Chicago has also ranked near the top of DAWN emergency department mentions for PCP over the last few years. Law enforcement sources in urban areas and in college towns located in many areas of the Chicago Field Division (CFD) report an increase in the abuse of these drugs. There is also a dangerous perception that many of these dangerous drugs are not harmful or addictive like cocaine and heroin. The root of the problem extends beyond the borders of Illinois and the CFD. Because of its status as an international transportation and trade center, Chicago remains vulnerable as a distribution center for drug trafficking organizations. As in other divisions across the nation, the DEA CFD is aggressively targeting dangerous drug traffickers internationally and domestically. CFD investigations have revealed direct links to MDMA sources of supply in Europe, New York City, and Miami. Regionally, Chicago serves as a secondary source area for club drugs distributed throughout the Midwest.
Money Laundering in Illinois: Chicago's status as a major financial center presents opportunities for laundering the vast sums of money that are generated from the trafficking of drugs. Designated as a High Intensity Financial Crimes Area, Chicago is a major center for the laundering of illegal drug profits. Traditionally, money laundering in Chicago was, and is still, accomplished by investing profits from illegal drug sales into legal businesses such as nightclubs and grocery stores. Mexican drug traffickers typically transport the cash in bulk via commercial vehicles or tractor-trailers to the Southwest Border and then into Mexico. Colombian traffickers, by contrast, use separate operational cells to launder money through more sophisticated mechanisms. The cells utilize foreign banks associated with countries with lax banking laws and greater secrecy principles, money exchange/wire businesses, ATM deposits and withdrawals or they may physically smuggle currency out of the United States. Colombian traffickers also use the Black Market Peso Exchange, which is a scheme to launder drug proceeds using Colombian Pesos.
Marijuana in Illinois: Marijuana is the most widely available and used illicit drug in the Division. Mexico-based poly-drug trafficking organizations transport bulk marijuana shipments concealed with legitimate goods in tractor-trailers into the Chicago area from the Southwest Border. It is common for smaller shipments of marijuana to be smuggled across the Southwest Border and later consolidated into larger shipments destined for Chicago. The primary wholesalers of marijuana in Chicago are the same Mexico-based organizations who supply most of the cocaine, methamphetamine, and Mexican heroin in the Chicago area. Mexican trafficking cells operating in the Chicago area are often composed of extended family members of associates or organization members in Mexico. In addition, local marijuana production-in both outdoor and indoor cultivation sites-reportedly is increasing in many areas.
Other Drugs in Illinois: The diversion of legitimate pharmaceuticals is a significant problem in Illinois. The problem of purchasing pharmaceuticals over the Internet has grown dramatically. Ritalin, a controversial drug prescribed for attention deficit disorder in children, may be gaining popularity as a recreational drug for teenagers. The most commonly diverted pharmaceutical drugs continue to be those containing hydrocordone, alprazolam, and phentermine. There has also been an increase in the abuse of diazepam (valium), especially 10 mg strength tablets. There has been a notable rise in the number of reported incidents of diversion of pseudoephedrine and, as a result, the number of investigations in this area is on the rise. There has been an increase in diversion of Canadian manufactured pseudoephedrine products being smuggled into the US, as opposed to domestically manufactured products being diverted from the regulated distribution chain. OxyContin remains a highly abused substance in the state. With increased media attention on OxyContin there has been a shift to an increased use and abuse of methadone.
DEA Mobile Enforcement Teams: This cooperative program with state and local law enforcement counterparts was conceived in 1995 in response to the overwhelming problem of drug-related violent crime in towns and cities across the nation. There have been 409 deployments completed resulting in 16,763 arrests of violent drug criminals as of February 2004. There have been 13 MET deployments in the State of Illinois since the inception of the program: Kankakee, North Chicago, Aurora, Chicago Heights, Bloomington, Chicago, Round Lake, Peoria, East St. Louis, Alton, Madison, Washington Park, and Waukegan.
DEA Regional Enforcement Teams: This program was designed to augment existing DEA division resources by targeting drug organizations operating in the United States where there is a lack of sufficient local drug law enforcement. This Program was conceived in 1999 in response to the threat posed by drug trafficking organizations that have established networks of cells to conduct drug trafficking operations in smaller, non-traditional trafficking locations in the United States. Nationwide, there have been 22 deployments completed resulting in 608 arrests of drug trafficking criminals as of February 2004. There have been no RET deployments in the State of Illinois.
Special Topics: There are currently 14 drug courts in existence in Illinois. One additional court is planned for the end of this year if funding remains available. The state drug courts are administered by the State's Attorneys Office. The Illinois General Assembly has recently established the Drug Court system in state statute.