Bringing Millions of Teens and Young Adults the Truth About Drugs
With a recent survey by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASA Columbia) showing 44 percent of high school students say drugs are sold at their schools, public service announcements of Scientology-supported drug education and prevention campaign take on even greater relevance.
According to a recent survey by the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University (CASA Columbia) in New York City, schools today are often hubs of drug-dealing activity. More than 40 percent of high school pupils surveyed knew fellow students who were selling drugs at their schools. Half of those responding said there were places nearby where kids would go during the school day to drink or get high.
Pro-drug myths are an essential part of the “business” of those who sell drugs to teens and young adults. Reformed drug dealers confess they said anything to get others to buy drugs. And drug use by school-age children continues to grow. So, to reach youth before they abuse drugs, the Truth About Drugs campaign includes a series of 16 public service announcements. Crafted to speak to young people, the “They Said, They Lied” PSAs take up and discredit the most common lies, including “one hit can’t hurt you,” “taking drugs makes you cool,” and “one drug high won’t lead to addiction.”
More than 500 television stations in some 100 countries have aired the award-winning Truth About Drugs public service announcements and they have been viewed by tens of millions. They rise above mass media noise and effectively reach their intended audience.
An integral part of the Truth About Drugs curriculum, the PSAs are used to introduce each of the commonly abused drugs covered in the program. A teacher in Canada who used these videos in her classroom said, “The PSAs provided the students with an immediate connection, as they used people within their own age group with whom they could identify.” An educator from Utah said, “I always use the PSAs to get [students’] attention…The videos seem to start the discussions, and then student after student volunteers to share about their own lives and families. The impact is huge.”
Government organizations, law enforcement agencies, schools, community groups and other drug prevention programs use these PSAs in their drug education and prevention activities. In Honduras, the National Council Against Drug Trafficking has shown the PSA to senior military officers and cadets at the military academy. Police officers from the Texas Crime Prevention Association use the PSAs and Truth About Drugs booklets in their drug education presentations. In Panama, the PSAs, airing regularly in prime time on the country’s national television station, have reached hundreds of thousands of viewers. In Taiwan, the messages have likewise been played on some 60 television stations, reaching millions of viewers, and have been used during drug education presentations in more than 700 schools.
The Church of Scientology has published a new brochure, Scientology: How We Help—The Truth About Drugs, Creating a Drug-Free World, to meet requests for more information about the drug education and prevention initiative it supports. To learn more or read a copy of the brochure, visit the Scientology website.
Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard wrote, “The planet has hit a barrier which prevents any widespread social progress—drugs and other biochemical substances. These can put people into a condition which not only prohibits and destroys physical health but which can prevent any stable advancement in mental or spiritual well-being.”
The Church of Scientology supports the Truth About Drugs, one of the world’s largest nongovernmental drug education and prevention campaigns. It has been conclusively proven that when young people are provided with the truth about drugs—factual information on what drugs are and what they do—usage rates drop commensurately.