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President's Message - May 2019

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on May 28, 2019 at 9:00 AM

Summer Is A Good Time to Refocus On Prevention  

Another busy school year is coming to a close and we are all looking forward to having some down time and reconnecting with family. The start of summer is a critical time to talk with your kids about risky behaviors. Teens and college students most often use substances for the first time during June or July, according to SAMHSA's National Survey on Drug Use and Health (NSDUH) data on adolescents – 2012  and NSDUH data on full-time college students – 2015.

Unfortunately it’s not as easy for parents to recognize that their child might be experimenting with alcohol or drugs. JUUL e-cigarettes that look like USB flash drives, flasks disguised as lotion containers, sunscreen or smart phone cases, and CBD gummies can be hidden in plain sight. These items can all be purchased online. Talk to your kids about the dangers of using drugs or alcohol and arm them with the knowledge they need to make healthy choices. If you need some talking points take a look at these 11 Tips For Talking To Your Kids About Drugs & Alcohol

It might be hard to acknowledge if your child has a substance abuse problem. It’s also difficult to find help. Many parents often ask - what should I do if my child is dealing with an addiction or mental health issue? The good news is a newly proposed Comprehensive Addiction Resources Emergency (CARE) Act 2019 would help provide the infrastructure and community building that is are critical to getting them the care they need.

Peggy

 

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Topics: President's Message, parenting, college students, teens, peer pressure, e-cigarettes, drug use, parents, alcohol use, summer, healthy kids, juul

President's Message - April 2019

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on April 26, 2019 at 3:00 PM

Communicating Across Generations 

I recently read that some families now have five living generations. Imagine that. Each generation has a totally different world view and processes information in a different way. However simply engaging with others remains the key to communicating effectively.

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Topics: President's Message, parenting, communication, safe homes smart parties, underage drinking, teens, peer pressure, parents, alcohol use, alcohol abuse

How Many Florida Children & Teens Drink Or Use Drugs?

Posted by Informed Families on September 25, 2018 at 2:17 PM

People make a lot of assumptions about what children and teens do or don't do when it comes to substance abuse. This can be based on the person's own experiences, what he or she sees on social media or in movies or what others may have experienced. Luckily, we don't have to assume, thanks to the Florida Youth Substance Abuse Survey (FYSAS) report, which was just released for 2018.

The FYSAS was administered to almost 55,000 Florida students in 686 middle and high schools in February of 2018.

Here are some highlights from the report:

  • Alcohol and cigarette use is declining. Between 2006 and 2018, past-month use of alcohol declined by 16.7 percent (11.7% for middle school students and 20.6% among high school students), binge drinking declined by 10 percent (5.3% for middle school students and 13.4% for high school students) and cigarette use declined by 8.1 percent (4.8% for middle school students and 10.6 percent reduction among high school students).
  • Binge drinking is still an issue. One out of every 10 high school students reported binge drinking in the last 30 days and one out of seven reported blacking out from drinking.
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Topics: children, drug abuse, teens, alcohol use

Parent Resource Center: Alcohol Facts You Need to Know

Posted by Informed Families on October 11, 2016 at 6:32 AM

 

Here’s one alcohol fact we are happy to see: Florida teens are drinking less. According to the 2014 Youth Substance Abuse Survey, past-month alcohol use decreased 10.2 percentage points in middle schoolers and 13.6 percentage points among high schoolers since 2004.

This good news is that there is solid evidence that the efforts of parents, schools and communities to prevent underage drinking are helping kids be safer and make wiser choices. However, this finding doesn’t mean we can back off those efforts. The same survey found that 1 in 5 high schoolers had reported blacking out from drinking, and another 20 percent had been in the car with an impaired driver. Here are more alcohol facts that parents should know:

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Topics: alcohol, teens

President's Message - May 2016

Posted by Peggy B. Sapp, President & CEO on May 31, 2016 at 3:32 PM

Sex and Violence Sell, But What's The Limit?

Are you fed up? Are you willing to act?

Calvin Klein debuted a new “Erotica” campaign this month, featuring an image of a photo taken from under a model’s skirt. This “upskirt” ad, not surprisingly, has angered many and prompted The National Center on Sexual Exploitation (NCOSE) to demand that Calvin Klein remove the photo "to stop normalizing and glamorizing sexual harassment." According to Dawn Hawkins ofNCOSE, “there’s a growing trend of sexual harassment where pictures are taken up a woman’s skirt without her knowledge, or without her consent.” Sex sells, but what’s the limit?

Four South Florida teenagers were arrested this month after reportedly taking turns raping an unconscious woman in a hotel at an after prom party.

Children subconsciously believe images and behaviors we allow on screens are acceptable, normal or (heaven forbid) “cool.” Clearly, our social norms and behaviors are impacted by advertising, movies, video games, etc. For example, studies have shown that when teens are regularly exposed to repeated violence while playing video games, they are more likely to demonstrate aggressive behavior.

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Topics: President's Message, teens, sex, advertising, social norms, violence, media

About Us

We teach people how to say no to drugs and how to make healthy choices. To reduce the demand for drugs, Informed Families has focused its efforts on educating and mobilizing the community, parents and young people in order to change attitudes. In this way we counteract the pressures in society that condone and promote drug and alcohol use and abuse. The organization educates thousands of families annually about how to stay drug and alcohol free through networking and a variety of programs and services .

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