To the editor:
Did you know that 9 out of 10 people with substance abuse issues began using before the age of 18? This is only one of the many alarming facts that are affecting our young people today.
So what can we do? There is one key word: Prevention.
When research-based substance use prevention methods are properly implemented by schools and communities, use of alcohol, tobacco, and illegal drugs is reduced. Such programs help teachers, parents, and health care professionals shape youths’ perceptions about the risks of substance use. When young people perceive drug use as harmful, they reduce their level of use.
What does all that mean for us here in Southington? How can we take Southington’s Town-Wide Effort to Promote Success (STEPS) to do that? Through education, reducing access and policy change, the STEPS Coalition collaborates with other sectors of the community to continue to make substance abuse prevention a priority here in the Southington community.
To learn more, please visit our website, www.southingtonsteps.org and follow us on Facebook or #SouthingtonSTEPS
Megan Albanese, STEPS Coalition staff