Independent evaluation of Drug Testing on Arrest

NatCen is conducting an independent evaluation of the Drug Testing on Arrest programme, funded by the Home Office.

This page provides information about the evaluation and what we would like to find out.

About the study

The National Centre for Social Research (NatCen) is carrying out independent research to evaluate the Drug Testing on Arrest (DToA) police programme. Drug Testing on Arrest aims to identify people who misuse drugs earlier in their contact with the criminal justice system and refer them to relevant support, to help reduce crime and make communities safer. Those who test positive are sent for an assessment, which provides an opportunity to engage with skilled drug workers as a first step into treatment and support.

The research will explore how Drug Testing on Arrest is being carried out by different police forces. As part of this, we are carrying out interviews and focus groups in areas around England and Wales to hear people’s reflections on what works well and less well, any positive and/or negative impacts resulting from the process, and what might improve it in the future.

We want to hear about how DToA works in practice from a broad range of perspectives. This includes police staff, drug treatment and support service providers, and service users who have accessed treatment and support through the programme. Hearing from this broad range of people will help us to build a rounded understanding of how the programme has been implemented and is working in different contexts. 

Who is carrying out the research?

This study is being conducted by the National Centre for Social Research (NatCen), Britain’s largest independent social research agency. We have been asked to carry out this evaluation by the Home Office, who provide funding to police forces to carry out Drug Testing on Arrest.

Contact us

Freephone: 0808 281 9526