October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month
Seeing “More Kids Drug Free” in Eau Claire County
Eau Claire, WI –– October 3, 2016-October is a big month and it’s all about More Kids Drug Free!
October is National Substance Abuse Prevention Month. In Eau Claire County, this month highlights the role of the Alliance for Substance Abuse Prevention and our mission to improve the lives of children, youth and adults by mobilizing the community to prevent and treat alcohol, tobacco and other drug use. Formed in 2002, the Alliance is a diverse community coalition of people who work collaboratively on practical ways to have more kids be drug and alcohol free, and promote safe and healthy communities.
On October 3rd, the Alliance is kicking off the #More Kids Drug Free campaign to share the many ways that youth are impacted by alcohol and drug use, and the importance of seeing More Kids Drug Free in Eau Claire County. This year, the campaign will focus on a pressing substance abuse issue that has become a national public health concern, and a local issue in need of local solutions – prescription drug abuse.
More than 200 high school youth in Eau Claire County report misusing prescription drugs in the past month, and nearly 1 out of 5 teens say these drugs are easy to get. The local campaign aims to bring awareness to this issue, and the importance of working together to make dangerous medications less available for youth to misuse. Most alcohol and other drug problems start at an early age and negatively impact health and safety for a lifetime. In Eau Claire County, the average age of first misuse of any prescription drug is 13. “This campaign matters in the community because kids free of alcohol and other drugs are less likely to get hurt today and have drug problems tomorrow,” says Joe Luginbill, campaign chair and member of the Alliance.
Everyone in the community has a role to play in preventing youth prescription drug abuse. Here are some practical things you can do:
• Talk to the kids and teens in your life about the dangers of prescription drugs
• Safely store and secure all medications in your home
• Properly dispose of expired or unused medicine at one of the 5 permanent medication drop-boxes in Eau Claire County, or at local medication Take-Back events.
For more information about preventing prescription drug abuse, and to get involved in the prevention effort through the More Kids Drug Free campaign, please visit www.getinvolvedASAP.org.