Multi Agency Effort to Educate Youths on Making Drug-Free Choices
DEC 8 -- (TREASURE ISLAND) + The Oakland Police Department, the Bureau of Narcotics Enforcement (BNE) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) today launched a one-day anti-drug education program called “Drug Store”, in partnership with other agencies and education leaders. More than 300 sixth graders from the Oakland Unified School District will attend the innovative intervention and prevention program at the Treasure Island Job Corps Center, 655 H Avenue, Bldg 366, Treasure Island.
DEA Special Agent in Charge Javier Peña stated, “ This presentation serves as a great reality check for kids about the pain and suffering drugs can cause. With events like this one, if we can prevent one child from using illicit drugs, it will be successful. By choosing such a powerful demonstration, I have no doubt it will leave a lasting impression.”
The Drug Store program uses positive prevention messages, factual information and realistic dramatizations to educate young people about the dangers of drug use. Using realistic props, students are directed through a series of nine stations, each dramatizing a step in the life of a student who uses drugs. Each professional “role player” is actually playing themselves including, in part, doctors, law enforcement, and clergy. The students are lead from an arrest stemming from an illegal drug purchase, to a court hearing and sentence upon conviction, and, ultimately, to a lethal drug overdose. The program concludes with a funeral dramatizing the possible consequences of making a wrong choice.
The Drug Store brings together agencies in a community wide effort to produce immediate and lasting changes in attitude and actions of participating youth. It is hoped the Drug Store will bring about change in its participants in the following ways: decrease substance abuse, decrease early onset of experimentation, decrease violence in schools and increase substance abuse awareness.
Among the other agencies that are participating in the Drug Store program are: Oakland Unified School District, U.S. Department of Labor, Treasure Island Job Corps Center, Children’s Hospital of Oakland, California National Guard, California Highway Patrol, U.S. Coast Guard, U.S. Marine Reserve, Superior Court of California, County of Alameda, County of Alameda Probation Department, American Medical Response Skyline High School Performing Arts Department, and Wal-Mart of Oakland.