Socially integrated drug users have received less attention than excluded and marginalized drug users who mostly present for treatment with a heroin addiction (EMCDDA, 2012; Terry et al 2007). In an attempt to dispel the myth that all drug users in treatment experience “chaos narratives” (Frank, 1995) and have lost control over their lives and are therefore helpless, unpredictable, and unreliable, this paper will explore treatment demand among socially integrated drug users. The paper begins with an attempt at unpacking the construct of the ‘socially integrated drug user’ by reviewing how this specific ‘type’ of user has been conceptualized in the literature. The empirical work uses secondary data (both numerical and interview data) collected initially by intake officers at the NGO Caritas and analyses trends for a number of treatment demand variables for a two year period, as well as a number of socio-demographic variables of such treatment service users such as employment status, family situation, educational attainment and living conditions. The paper shows how not all drug users are in fact incapable of participating in conventional life and engaging in ‘normal’ activities such as holding a job, maintaining stable accommodation and participating in education The paper will make recommendations for more effective intervention with such service users.
Keywords: Socially Integrated Clients; Drug Users; Treatment Demand; Intervention; Addiction; Social exclusion