Essential Report

Illegal drugs

Sep 13, 2016

Q. Thinking about the issue of illegal drugs in Australia, please indicate which position is closer to your view:

  Total   Vote Labor Vote Lib/Nat Vote Greens Vote other
We should decriminalise all illegal drugs (including production and trafficking within Australia) to reduce the unregulated black market trade in these substances. 11%   12% 11% 14% 7%
We should decriminalise small scale illegal drug use and possession, but maintain criminal prohibitions on production and trafficking. 31%   37% 24% 48% 33%
We should prohibit all activities related to illegal drugs in Australia, including production, trafficking, large and small-scale production and use. 48%   45% 55% 26% 51%
None of the above 11%   7% 10% 12% 9%

42% think that all or some drug use should be decriminalised and 48% think that all drug activities should be prohibited.

62% of Greens voters and 49% of Labor voters think at least some use of illegal drugs should be decriminalised. 46% of those aged under 35 and 47% of those with university education think that all or some drug use should be decriminalised


Read Essential's ongoing research on the public response to Covid-19.

Sign up for updates

Receive the Essential Report in your inbox.
  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.