Thursday, September 30, 2010

Teen Alcohol Use On The Decline

The Cheshire Herald (Cheshire, CT) September 30, 2010

"Another survey of risky behavior by Cheshire teens was conducted this spring and it was determined that fewer youth have tried alcohol in their lifetime, compared to the same survey that was completed two years ago. The survey, finished in March and just released to the public, showed that lifetime usage decreased six to eight percent over all grades." Read more.

Death of California youth puts focus on rise in antigay bullying

Christian Science Monitor, September 29, 2010

13-year-old's death adds to nationwide spike this year in such cases, education group says.

"In a recent survey of LGBT students at middle and high schools, more than 80 percent say they were verbally harassed, while 40 percent reported physical harassment. The death of 13-year-old Seth Walsh in California is one of at least three youth suicide cases nationwide this month that are prompting renewed attention to antigay bullying." Read more.

New Research Offers Insight Into Teen Drinking Culture

Arlington, VA - September 29, 2010

"While teens admit to clearly hearing messages about the dangers of drinking and driving, new research indicates that teens do not acknowledge the toll alcohol plays on a maturing body or the legal consequences of consuming alcohol underage. Alarmingly, teens studied indicate that consuming alcohol was viewed as a rite of passage in high school as they approached adulthood. The Understanding Teen Drinking Cultures in America study was conducted by George Mason University and funded by The Century Council to learn more about teen drinking habits directly from teens themselves." Read more.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Parent’s band together to fight bullies

22 News (Springfield, MA) September 27, 2010

"A group of Springfield area parents have banded together to see what they can do to wipe out bullying in the schools and elsewhere." Read more.

Family dinners are good for you and your kids

Star (Minneapolis - St. Paul, Minnesota) September 25, 2010

"Studies done by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University show that children in families that eat together three times per week have a lower risk of substance abuse and are likelier to get better grades in school." Read more.

7 Stores Caught Selling Booze to Minors

The Daily Fairfield (Fairfield, CT) September 27, 2010

"Trader Joe's, Whole Foods and Fresh Market were among seven retailers that failed a liquor compliance check conducted by the Westport Police Department with help from the state Liquor Control Commission, Lt. Vincent Penna said in a statement... Officers from the detective bureau joined state liquor control agents and undercover youths with The Governor's Prevention Partnership" Read more.

Friday, September 24, 2010

State Launches Campaign Against Teen Drinking At East Hartford Liquor Store

Hartford (East Hartford, CT) September 23, 2010

"State residents can expect to hear new radio ads warning against buying alcohol for minors and see literature and banners at liquor stores in coming months as the fifth annual campaign against underage drinking begins....In 2005, Connecticut saw 26 fatalities related to underage drinking and driving." Read more.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Showing Gay Teenagers a Happy Future

New York Times - September 22, 2010

"A new online video channel is reaching out to teenagers who are bullied at school for being gay. The message: life really does get better after high school." Read more.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Cyber-bullying causes more depression, study finds

Reuters - Washington, D.C. - September 21, 2010

"Cyber-bullying may be even harder on the victims than physical beatings or name-calling, U.S. researchers reported on Tuesday.  And unlike traditional bullies, cyber-bullies seem to be less depressed than their prey, the team at the National Institutes of Health found.  Read more.

Friday, September 17, 2010

State-run website targets drug abuse  (Concord, New Hampshire) September 17, 2010

"One in five teens in New Hampshire say they have abused prescription drugs at least once, a trend that has led New Hampshire to create a guide for parents about medications most likely to be misused by their children. The state on Thursday launched a website,, with information about pain relievers, stimulants and anti-depressants. It also provides information about alcohol and marijuana, which are still the drugs of choice among teens." Read more.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Alcohol linked to early-onset dementia

ABC News - September 16, 2010

"New research suggests up to a fifth of all cases of early-onset dementia could be alcohol related, nearly twice the figure suggested by earlier estimates.  Drug and alcohol experts say the figures are a worry and may reflect an increase in binge drinking among young people."  Read more.

N.H. unveils website on prescription drug abuse (Concord, New Hampshire) September 16, 2010

"New Hampshire residents have a new tool to help teens avoid prescription drug abuse.  It's a growing problem in the Granite State. Officials say one in five New Hampshire teens abuse prescription drugs. In fact, last year more Granite Staters died from prescription drug overdoses than car crashes.  Today the state is unveiling a new website: It was created by a governor-appointed commission and public health officials. The site provides parents with information about the problem and available resources for help."

Justice Reveals Major Mentoring Grant Winners

Youth Today - September 15, 2010
"Some of the biggest organizations in youth work were winners of the Justice Department’s National Mentoring grants announced Wednesday. They are:

* Boys and Girls Clubs of America (BGCA), $40 million.
* Big Brothers Big Sisters of America (BBBSA), $10 million.
* National Association of Police Athletic/Activities Leagues (PAL), $5 million.
* National 4-H Council, $5 million.
Read more.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How Many Teens Have to Die Before Focus on the Family Gives a Damn?

The Huffington Post - September 15, 2010

"Another teenager killed himself because of bullying and anti-gay harassment. This one was in Minnesota, and his name was Justin Aaberg. The local news report is here. School officials, wary of conservative protests, did nothing. This comes on the heels of the suicide of another teenager in Indiana, one who never actually said whether he was gay but who was mercilessly harassed nonetheless. His name was Billy Lucas. "  Read more.

Students can report bullying online (New Bern, N.C.) September 14, 2010

"A visit to the school system’s website is now all it takes to report incidents of bullying in Carteret County schools and at school activities.  Anonymous reports can be made by logging onto to the website at carteret and clicking 'Report A Bully' in the left navigational bar." Read more.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

At Canandaigua Middle School, character education is getting results (Canandaigua, N.Y) September 12, 2010

"While administrators at Canandaigua Academy contend with finding reasonable guidelines for school dance behavior, students at a younger level will continue to be instructed in character education programs aimed to strengthen good behaviors and curb negative ones.  Last year, Canandaigua Middle School started the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program...This year, the school’s administration is seeking to further the enthusiasm about the Olweus program, and expand the character education component to more school involvement."  Read more.

Teen's suicide prompts call for tougher anti-bullying laws

Fox 59 WXIN (Greensburg, Indiana) September 14, 2010

"There's a new push to strengthen the punishments for bullying after a 15-year-old Greensburg, Indiana teenager took his own life...There seems to be no plans to file charges against anyone who bullied Billy Lucas, but tougher consequences could be on the way. Students said Billy had been bullied ever since he entered the Greensburg School District in the fourth grade.  They said things got worse as he got older until he just couldn't take it anymore and killed himself."  Read more.

Underage drinking not a joke

The News Leader (Staunton, VA) September 12, 2010

"A recent story about teenage drinking in Staunton and Waynesboro should set off alarms and be a call to action for our communities to guard our teens against alcohol abuse.  That 70 percent of 11th graders in Staunton and Waynesboro say they have tried alcohol should be enough of a wake-up call. That 28 percent of 11th graders admitted they have been a binge drinker within the previous month should be of grave concern to both parents and teachers."  Read more.

Groton to hold prescription drug "drop off" (Groton, CT) September 11, 2010

"Ledge Light Health District, Groton Utilities and the Groton City Police Department are holding an event where people can hand in unused or expired prescription drugs - no questions asked - on Saturday, Sept. 25, at the City Municipal Building.  The event, which will run from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., is part of the first National Prescription Drug Take-Back campaign, organized by the federal Drug Enforcement Administration. Groton is the only community in the area participating in the nationwide program."  Read more.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Survey of Police and Teachers: Alcohol and Marijuana

Center for Medicine in the Public Interest (New York, N.Y.) September 9, 2010

"The Center for Medicine in the Public Interest released the results of a national Teen Substance Abuse survey today, indicating that police officers and high school teachers nationwide believe alcohol and marijuana are the most serious problem substances facing teenagers.  These survey results come as the Food and Drug Administration has scheduled an Advisory Committee meeting for September 14 to examine whether abuse of cough and cold medications by teens requires stricter controls on the sale of those commonly used products."  Read more.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Merit found in bullying case against NJ school

The Advertiser News (Trenton, N.J.) September 9, 2010

"New Jersey’s Division on Civil Rights has found that the Old Bridge School District may have violated the Law Against Discrimination by failing to stop the bullying of a middle-schooler...The division says it appears the student endured an extremely hostile environment at Jonas Salk Middle School when he was ridiculed for his perceived sexual orientation and Jewish religion."  Read more.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

N.Y. Governor signs anti-bullying bill into law

washingtonblade, (New York, NY) September 8, 2010

"New York Gov. David Paterson (D) signed into law on Wednesday legislation intended to alleviate bullying and harassment against LGBT people in public schools.  The legislation, known as the Dignity for All Students Act, includes protections based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. According to the New York Times, the law will require school districts to report instances of bullying to the State Education Department."  Read more.

Backers say Utah underage drinking campaign working

Salt Lake Tribune (Salt Lake City, Utah) September 7, 2010

"A media and education campaign to prevent underage drinking is going into its fifth year in a state-funded program that tops $7 million in spending, and supporters say it is showing results...Gov. Gary Herbert credited the campaign for a drop in underage drinking, gauged by statewide surveys of Utah’s schoolchildren in 2007 and 2009. During those two years, 5,500 fewer Utah teens reported using alcohol in the past 30 days, and there were 2,600 fewer underage binge drinkers."  Read more

Maine Parents Underestimate Teens' Alcohol Use, Survey Indicates

The Maine Public Broadcasting Network, September 7, 2010

"A newly-released survey shows that many Maine parents of high school students appear to underestimate their teen's use of alcohol, including the amount they drink. The Maine Integrated Youth Health Survey was recently conducted by phone and shows a large gap between what parents believe about their teen's alcohol use and what teens report."  Read more.

Youth Exposure to Alcohol Advertising in National Magazines, 2001-2008

Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health - September 7, 2010
The Center on Alcohol Marketing and Youth (CAMY)

"Because there is growing evidence that youth exposure to alcohol advertising increases the likelihood and quantity of underage drinking, reducing youth exposure is an important public health goal....More young people in the U.S. drink alcohol every month than smoke cigarettes or use any illegal drug. In 2008, 10.1 million young people between the ages of 12 and 20 reported drinking in the past month, and 6.6 million reported binge drinking...Alcohol use causes more than 4,600 deaths of persons under 21 each year, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention." Read more

Study: Teasing about weight can affect pre-teens profoundly

University of Nebraska - Lincoln, September 7, 2010

"Results are a signal for more early identification, intervention efforts at schools, researchers say.  Schoolyard taunts of any type can potentially damage a child's sense of self-confidence. But a new study suggests that a particular kind of teasing – about weight – can have distinctive and significant effects on how pre-teens perceive their own bodies.  The research, among the first to specifically examine the impact of weight-based criticism on pre-adolescents, also hints that the practice can cause other health and emotional issues for its victims."  Read more.

Parents taking stand vs. prescription pill abuse

Boston (Boston, MA) September 7, 2010

"Last night in Brockton, a group of South Shore parents spent the night talking about the best way to revive someone from a drug overdose and how an upcoming national drug “take-back” day may help thwart addictions.  'A lot of parents find their kids dead,' said Joanne Peterson, a Raynham mother whose group Learn To Cope helps families ravaged by prescription pill abuse.   Read more.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Experts see rise in misuse of dangerous prescription drugs

 The Ridgefield (Ridgefield, CT) September 7, 2010

"Liz Jorgensen, a Ridgefield drug and alcohol counselor, has sent 30 to 40 area young people to inpatient rehab for prescription drug addiction in the last year.

'I’ve never seen anything like this in my 25 years of work,' Ms. Jorgensen said."
Read more.

SCSU sets stiff fines for underage drinking

New Haven Register (New Haven, CT) September 7, 2010

"School is back in session at Southern Connecticut State University, and that means the socializing has started.  But any underage student who is thinking about popping open a beer better think twice. Make that 136 times. A new SCSU policy sets $136 as the fine for an underage student caught with alcohol on campus. And that’s for a first offense; the fines increase for subsequent incidents, rising as high as $500."  Read more.

Hamden to host musical on bullying

New Haven Register (Hamden, CT) September 6, 2010

"An educational children’s musical about bullying that was in pre-production here last October is coming back to town.  Trust Your Gut Productions of New York is presenting “When Push Comes to Shove” at 7:30 p.m. Friday in the Thornton Wilder Hall of the Miller Library. The show describes that there is more to bullying than the typical physical bully, and urges youngsters to look for signs."  Read more.

Manager chosen for drug use prevention program (Old Lyme, CT) September 6, 2010

"Lymes' Youth Service Bureau and the Child and Family Agency of Southeastern Connecticut have hired Karen Fischer as their project manager for a new collaborative substance-abuse prevention program." Read more.

Madison teen drinking mirrors nation’s

New Haven Register (Madison, CT) September 4, 2010

"Most local high school students drink most frequently when their parents are home, and an average Madison teen has tried alcohol and tobacco before the age of 14, according to a survey by the Madison Alcohol and Drug Education Coalition....The survey, which shows similar results on a national level, was taken last year by 1,700 local students in seventh through 12th grades. While people may think that their kids aren’t doing it, alcohol and drug use is common, the survey shows."  Read more.

Friday, September 3, 2010

No on Prop 19: Wholesale pot legalization a lousy idea

The Gilroy Dispatch (Gilroy, CA) September 2, 2010
Dispatch Editorial Board

"Nine of 10 states having the highest levels of past-month illicit drug use among persons age 12 or older also had the highest levels of past-month marijuana use (in alphabetical order: Alaska, Colorado, District of Columbia, Montana, New Hampshire, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Washington).

That's directly from a report issued by the federal government's Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Association.

It points out why California voters should make sure Proposition 19, the Regulate, Control and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010, which would legalize marijuana use, goes up in smoke this November. Our society really doesn't need to legalize another drug that involves such serious debate on health issues."  Read more.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Cyber-bullying defies traditional school bully stereotype

The Washington Post (Washington, DC) September 2, 2010

"The advent of social networking sites and text messaging has allowed young girls the opportunity to take on a role traditionally reserved for boys, experts say....Cyber-bullying in Fairfax County public schools seems to occur primarily in middle schools."  Read more

Group offers urban students financial support, mentoring (Milburn, N.J.) September 2, 2010

"The mentoring program is a crucial part of the organization that offers inner-city youth role models they may not have had before....the response from educators on the mentoring has been important. Many of them share that students in these areas don’t know people who have been successful."  Read more.

Teach kids how to stop bullies this year

Danbury News Times - September 1, 2010

"Between 40 and 80 percent of school-age children experience bullying in their school career, and up to 15 percent are chronic victims or bullies...It's estimated that one in four boys who bully will have a criminal record by age 30".  Read more.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Bullying Can Happen Anywhere, but Home Is Often First Line of Defense

ABCNews/U.S. - September 1, 2010

"Modern-day bullying can happen anywhere -- at school, at the mall or on a playground or at home. It can take place over a computer or a cell phone, within large or small groups.  According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 26 percent of 10-, 11-, and 12-year-olds come up against bullying -- either as victims or as bullies."  Read more.

Take-back prescription drug day planned by DEA

Baltimore Sun (Baltimore, MD) September 1, 2010

"It's time to clean out your medicine cabinet. The federal Drug Enforcement Administration is holding a drug take-back day Sept. 25. This is the first-ever drug take-back day hosted by the federal government. It runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and is free and anonymous."  For CT take-back locations and links, Read more.

Dodd announces more than $2 million for CT youth drug prevention programs - September 1, 2010

"Senator Chris Dodd (D-CT) announced today that 18 youth drug prevention programs across Connecticut will receive more than $2.07 million in Drug Free Communities Support Program grants from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy. Fourteen programs in Connecticut will receive continuing funding to support and expand their ongoing prevention efforts and an additional four programs will receive grant funding for the first time."  Read more.

Teen Substance Use Seems to Differ by Race

Health Day News (CA) September 1, 2010
"California study finds Hispanics most likely to drink, smoke, use marijuana; Asians least likely. A new California survey suggests that Hispanic middle-school students are more likely to smoke, drink and use marijuana than other kids their age, while Asians are the least likely to experiment with these substances."  Read more.