WASHINGTON -- The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) recently announced its new educational
website for parents, www.GetSmartAboutDrugs.com. The
website was developed to be a resource for parents and caregivers to help them
identify drug abuse, prevent children from using drugs, and find resources for
substance abuse prevention.
“DEA wants to share our
knowledge about drugs with parents, teachers, and all those who care about
keeping our children safe,” said Acting Administrator Michele M. Leonhart. “In
this fight, information is power, and DEA’s new website has current, accurate,
and practical information about how to spot signs of abuse, identify drugs and
paraphernalia , and how to talk to teens about drugs. With just a few clicks,
parents will be confident and ready to help their kids resist drugs.”
The parent website is a
follow-up to DEA’s highly popular site for teens, www.JustThinkTwice.com. Educated and
involved parents are an important part of the solution to the problem of drug
abuse in America. But the Partnership for a Drug-Free America’s 2007 Partnership
Attitude Tracking Survey found that a majority of parents of middle school
children (51%) report they need more tools and information to help their kids
deal with drugs and alcohol.
Having the facts about drug
use by kids today is important, because:
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* Today's kids are more
likely to begin abusing drugs with prescription and over-the-counter drugs like
Vicodin and Xanax than with marijuana.
* Among children as young as
11, inhaling the fumes from common household products to get high is popular and
can be fatal even for first time users. Parents can use a visual glossary to
discover the hidden dangers in your home.
* Being caught in possession
of illegal drugs can prohibit a young person from qualifying for federal college
loans. Parents can find out about the legal, health, financial and social
consequences of drug abuse.
DEA is the nation’s
authoritative source on current drug trends. Because of the investigations it
conducts and the seizures it makes, DEA has real-time, localized information
about what drugs can be found in America’s neighborhoods. Because its regional
laboratories regularly keep DEA apprised of what the labs receive, DEA can
provide the public with accurate details about substances. This information is
put to use in this website’s visual glossary, which contains searchable drug and
paraphernalia information, photos and descriptions. If a parent finds an unknown
substance in a child’s room or car, he or she can identify the substance by
searching the glossary’s entries for powders, leaves, liquids or other
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Says Scott Johnson, Co-Founder and the company who designed the site, "Important
Government technology initiatives such as this must be carefully branded and
deliver a superior user experience to be fully successful. It is the lack of
these that often causes worthy government programs to be unrecognized and
underutilized. As a parent, this site speaks to me, and effectively delivers the
information, resources and encouragement that I need as I fight to keep my own
kids free from drugs."
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