More than 40 per cent of troubled Hong Kong teenagers polled in a survey said they had taken drugs in Shenzhen, where they were cheaper and easier to obtain. Frontline social workers said the 24-hour crossing services had attracted more young abusers across the border and some of those who headed for discos in Shenzhen had been recruited as drug dealers. Academics and social workers, who disclosed their survey findings yesterday, urged the government to allocate more resources to help solve the problem, including providing alternative sports activities for young people. The survey, conducted by academics from Chinese University, the University of Hong Kong and five social service agencies, polled 504 teenagers aged 14 to 19 from correctional institutes, youth centres and boys' and girls' homes. A total of 219, or 44 per cent, said they had taken drugs in Hong Kong and Shenzhen in the past year. A further 183 had taken drugs in Hong Kong only. Forty-one per cent of the 219 respondents were out of work, while a further 9 per cent said they did illegal jobs such as selling pirated goods. Most of the 219 teenagers said they had taken ketamine, Ecstasy and cannabis in Shenzhen discos, but three-quarters of them said they went to Shenzhen no more than three times a month. The rest said they went one to six times a week. Cheung Yuet-wah, from Chinese University's department of sociology, said due to easy transport, young people living in northern districts were more likely to travel to Shenzhen to take drugs. The survey also found that drug abusers like going there because drugs are cheaper and more easily obtained. Social worker Paul Lo Po-sing said some young people who frequented Shenzhen discos had been recruited to work as dealers, while those going there for the first time were given free drug samples.