Continuing her efforts to raise awareness about the dangers of substance abuse and addiction among the nation's youth, Congresswoman Bono Mack (CA-45) reminds everyone that next week, November 8-14, is National Drug Facts Week. Bono Mack encourages teachers and parents to get involved next week and discuss with children facts about drug abuse and addiction to help stop this deadly cycle.
"Drug abuse and addiction is a serious problem in our country. While marijuana is the number one used drug among our youth, prescription drug abuse is our country's fastest growing drug problem and it's literally killing thousands of teens across our country," Bono Mack stated. "Being aware of drug addiction and abuse and the harmful impacts it can have on our kids is an important step toward helping and protecting loved ones."
Bono Mack introduced legislation, H. Res. 1678, to recognize the first annual U.S. National Institute on Drug Abuse's (NIDA) National Drug Facts Week. The week is dedicated to teaching kids about the dangers of drugs, by holding events throughout the country where kids can talk with experts to learn the facts about drugs and their negative effects.
"It is my hope that through "National Drug Facts Week,' children and teens learn about the very real risks of drug abuse, particularly of prescription drugs. Far too many people think because medications are prescribed by a doctor or purchased over-the-counter that they are "safe' drugs--but when abused, these drugs can be highly addictive and even deadly," expressed Bono Mack. "I encourage students and teachers across the country to get involved and get valuable information that will help stop the cycle of drug abuse in our nation."
The Congresswoman encourages parents and teachers to discuss alarming drug facts, such as those below, from NIDA's 2009 Monitoring the Future survey with their children and students:
* Over 11% of highschoolers reported using marijuana in the past year
* The perceived risk of using marijuana has decreased among these students, despite evidence it is very harmful to young people's health
* 1 in 10 high school seniors reported using Vicodin and 1 in 20 reported using OxyContin for non-medical purposes
* Over half of youth who report abusing or misusing these powerful prescription painkillers, like OxyContin and Vicodin, get them from family and friends