Continuing their effort to raise awareness about the dangers of substance abuse and addiction among the nation's youth, Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack (CA-45) and Congressman Bill Delahunt (MA-10) introduced legislation to recognize the "National Drug Facts Week." H. Res. 1678 would designate the first annual "National Drug Facts Week" beginning November 8, 2010, and serve as a week-long national awareness campaign to bring together teens and scientific experts to discuss the facts about drug abuse and addiction.
"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."
Just recently the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) released statistics that the number of hospital admissions for prescription drug abuse has increased by 400% in the last decade and the nonmedical use of prescription drugs has increased by 12% in just one year from 2008-2009.
"Between 1998 and 2008, drug abuse grew most rapidly in the eighteen to twenty-four age group so it is critical that we work together to educate our children and teens about the real dangers of this epidemic," said Delahunt. "National Drug Facts Week is an opportunity for students, parents, and teachers to share valuable information about a crisis that transcends age, gender, race/ethnicity, education, employment status, and region."
The first annual "National Drug Facts Week" is being sponsored by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, in partnership with the White House Office Of National Drug Control Policy, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, the Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools in the U.S. Department of Education, The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration in the U.S. Department of Transportation, the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Bureau of Justice Assistance in the U.S. Department of Justice, the National Guard, Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America, the Partnership for a Drug-Free America, MTV MusiCares, Vans, and the Discovery Channel.