June was filled with many emotions and hurdles which were overwhelming to many people. It is safe to say that the month of June could be perceived as the revelation of the undeniable truth of long lasting effects. Despite of the social unrest and the Global COVID-19 Pandemic, RAD has found ways to bring happiness, resources and education to the communities it serves while undergoing great times of uncertainty. You can find some of RAD’s June projects hightlighted below.
SKILLZ Summer School (Pasadena)
SKILLZ is a summer school program that takes place in an environment of love, support, understanding and high expectations. Students were given the opportunity to work in small groups with instructors who cared about the students and their success. During the Life Skillz section of the program, topics like alcohol, marijuana, prescription medication, and other substance related issues were discussed and unfolded. Due to unexpected global pandemic, SKILLZ found ways to adapt to the Safer-at-Home orders and provided programing via Zoom’s platform. In order to create the best effective program, SKILLZ student cohort was decreased and increased the staff to student ratio. This ensured more individualized attention for the students and increased the success rate of the program. By the end of the program, students expressed how impactful and fun SKILLZ was to them. Most of them also expressed how much they will miss SKILLZ and highlighted their hopes that online learning during the academic school year will reflect the online learning experienced they had during the SKILLZ Summer School program. This programing would have not been possible without the help of staff, community partners and school districts. A huge Thank You to everyone who made it possible and overcame all the unpredicted obstacles that came along with COVID-19 restrictions and the untraditional online learning process.
Parent Resource Directory
As things progress in ways we did not expect, RAD decided to compile all the currently identified resources available to individuals thought the San Gabriel Valley (SGV) into one Parent Resource Directory booklet. As community partners, it is our duty to ensure that the families we serve have access to the any additional resource they may need. This Parent Resource Directory includes resources like: food, health, dental health, mental health, educational resources, faith- based resources, legal resources, social services, substance use treatment, other services including Black Lives Matter resources, and some resources that help individuals with the application process of certain resources/services. This Parent Resource Directory was designed to help facilitate the process of accessing community resources for families throughout the SGV.
SUD+ Care Packages
Day One and other community partners came together to provided care packages for families within the community. These care packages included drug, alcohol, and prescription medication prevention material, health related goodies, COVID-19 essentials, hand sanitizers, masks, and a variety of other things like toothbrushes, reusable bags, crossword puzzles, games, etc. Care packages were designed for students and for parents and families. Students and families were asked to take a picture and send them to staff members.
Black Lives Matter
June has also been filled with civil unrest as people battled through something that has always existed but often fails to be acknowledged. It would be absurd to recognize the recent flood of racial injustice as a newly formed phenomenon when racial profiling, discrimination, oppression, racial injustice, are things that has been embedded in our daily lives and throughout history in various ways or forms. RAD stands with the Black community in the fight against racism, injustice and violence. RAD also strives to help black children, youth and families in the fight against systemic racism, violence and the oppression of the Black community. We are committed to working alongside our communities to create a better world. Black Lives Matter yesterday, today and tomorrow!
While wrapping up the school year and ending many month long projects, RAD has decided to dedicate the month of May to our youth. During this month’s blog post, you will be able to see how much work our students have done to increase the well-being of their communities and their educational success. In addition, you will be able to capture how important it is to have strong partnerships with your youth, parents, community members and partnering agencies.
Project Sticker Shock
Project Sticker Shock is an internship program designed to reach adults who might purchase alcohol legally and provide to minors. The students who partake in Project Sticker Shock are passionate about combating the legal purchasing of alcohol being provided to minors and indirectly try to reduce the number of youth who consume alcohol. The students who participate in this project place stickers that provide warnings about the penalties for furnishing alcohol to minors. These stickers are placed on all multi-packs of beer, alcopops, and other alcohol products that might be appealing to people under 21 years of age. Project Sticker Shock provides the opportunity for youth, parents, community partners, local retailers, law enforcement, and prevention professionals to create relationships to enhance the health of the community. In addition, it also raises awareness about the dangers of underage drinking. During this last fiscal year, students, from Day One, placed stickers throughout retailers in Pasadena and Altadena. Meanwhile, other students throughout the San Gabriel Valley placed stickers throughout their communities. The pictures below are from some of our Project Sticker Shock interns placing stickers at some of our local alcohol retailer locations. Thank you to our local retailers for helping us combat underage drinking!
Pasadena Project Sticker Shock Photo Voice Project
Youth Collision members throughout Pasadena decided to take Project Sticker Shock to another level by providing another perspective as to how alcohol has been a prominent present in their community and in their lives. Through the Photo voice Project students used photography to capture moments that depicted how they perceive alcohol has impacted their community. Along with their photos, they wrote a short narrative to describe why the photo holds such significance and to illustrate the significant connection between alcohol and their lives. Indirectly, the photo voice project advocates for a finer environment. Below you will find the photos and narratives that the students submitted for this photo voice project.
RAM Photo Voice Project
Every year in LA County, prescription drug misuse is responsible for:
9,000 emergency room visits
2,500 addiction treatment
What is prescription drug misuse?
What prescription drugs are commonly abused, and what are the signs?
What can I do to prevent prescription drug misuse?
DEA Office - Collection Site Search
Los Angeles County Department of Public Health
Safe Med LA
National Institute of Drug Abuse
Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration
This St. Patrick’s Day weekend, Rethinking Alcohol and Other Drugs (RAD) is partnering up with local businesses in the San Gabriel Valley on a Public Awareness Campaign to help prevent drunk driving and remind bar and restaurant patrons to plan ahead for a safe St. Patrick’s Day. The holiday is meant to celebrate Saint Patrick and the heritage and culture of the Irish in general. However, reports show that popular “bar holidays” like St. Patrick’s Day are among the most dangerous days for drunk and drugged driving deaths. In fact, drunk driving deaths and underage drinking increase around popular celebrations. Alcohol remains the second leading cause of death and disability in Los Angeles County, and is associated with over 54 acute and chronic health conditions. It is illegal in every state to drive with a blood-alcohol concentration of (BAC) of .08 or higher, yet:
The Unlucky Facts:
- Over 1 in 3 fatal collisions involve alcohol.
- 1 person is killed in a drunk-driving crash every 52 minutes.
- Almost 1 in 10 (8%) of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes have one or more previous DUI convictions.
- Excessive alcohol consumption costs LA County $10.8 Billion every year (Roughly $1,000 per resident.)
- After alcohol, marijuana and prescription drugs are most commonly linked to drugged driving crashes.
RAD Reminds to you to Plan Ahead for a Safe St. Patrick’s Day with 5 simple tips:
1. TALK about the risks of excessive alcohol use with your teens, friends and family.
2. ONLY DRIVE SOBER Designate a non-drinking driver before any celebration, and encourage others to do the same.
3. TAKE THE KEYS Never let friends drive under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
4. BE A RESPONSIBLE HOST Serve water and offer non-alcoholic beverages.
5. NEVER PROVIDE ALCOHOL TO MINORS Keep alcohol away from minors and supervise.
Participating Businesses: THANK YOU!
Reports show that the me period between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day includes some of the most dangerous days for drunk and drugged driving deaths. In fact, drunk driving deaths and underage drinking increase around the holidays according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administraion and the Substance Abuse and Mental health Services Administration. Alcohol remains the 2nd leading cause of death and disability in Los Angeles County, and is associated with over 54 acute and chronic health conditions. The good news is that alcohol (and other drug) related incidents are 100% preventable, and RAD has made prevention messages available to download & share in 5 languages this holiday season.
RAD reminds you to plan ahead for safe holiday season with 4 simple steps:
1. Talk about the risks of excessive alcohol use with your teens, friends and family.
2. Only Drive Sober: Designate a non‐drinking driver before any celebraon if you are going to drink alcohol and encourage others to do the same.
3. Take the Keys: Never let friends drive if they are impaired, or under the influence of alcohol or other drugs.
4. Be a responsible host: Offer alcohol‐free beverages. Make sure all of your guests leave with a sober driver.
5. Never provide alcohol or other drugs to minors: Keep alcohol away from minors and supervise.
More reasons to plan ahead this holiday season:
● Over 1 in 3 fatal collisions involve alcohol.
● 1 person is killed in a drunk‐driving crash every 52 minutes.
● Alcohol‐related emergency room visits increased by 82% between 2006‐2013 in LA County.
● 10,076 people were killed in crashes involving alcohol in 2013. 65% were the drunk drivers themselves.
● Over 1 in 3 young adults (Ages 18‐25) binge drink.
● 1 in 5 child passenger deaths involve a drunk driver.
● Almost 1 in 10 (8%) of drunk drivers involved in fatal crashes have one or more previous DUI convicons.
● Men are more likely than women to be driving drunk in fatal crashes.
● Drunk driving is more common at night: Half of all traffic fatalies at night (6 p.m. to 5:59 a.m.) involve drunk drivers.
● Among drivers ages 18‐34, 45% of fatalies involve a drunk driver with a BAC of .08 or higher.
● Alcohol‐related crashes, injuries and incidents cost LA County $10.3 Billion every year.
● Impaired‐driving crashes cost the United States $49.8 Billion every year.
● After alcohol, marijuana and prescripon drugs are most commonly linked to drugged driving crashes.
We wish you and your loved ones a #RAD Holiday Season!
Day One Youth Advocates, parents, elected officials, school district staff, fire and police department staff, and community members from each city participated in the events in their which included youth-led skits, youth panelists, and interactive discussions. Participants learned about current teen alcohol trends in their city, and discussed community solutions to prevent the health and safety risks related to underage teen drinking that include violence, sexual assault, and driving under the influence.
- Alcohol is the most abused drug among youth in the U.S., and is used by teens more than all other drugs combined.
- Youth drink 11% of all alcohol consumed in the U.S.
- Alcohol is the #1 cause of accidental injury and death among teens.
- 696,000 college students experience alcohol-related assault every year.
- Youth who begin drinking before age 15 are 4 times more likely to develop alcohol dependence or addiction.
After learning and listening to youth speak about their experiences with alcohol and drugs in their city, community members voted to prioritize local prevention strategies for their city. Community organizations including Pacific Clinics, Bike San Gabriel Valley, ChapCare, the Pasadena Public Health Department, Insight and the Pasadena Altadena Coalition of Transformative Leaders (PACTL) participated by providing resources and information. This series was made possible by the Substance Abuse Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA).
Day One Youth Advocates performed scenes from a typical underage drinking party,
including: binge drinking, marijuna & other drug use, violence, sexual assault
Youth participants answered questions, and shared personal experiences and perspectives on underage drinking culture in their city .
Community members voted to prioritize community prevention strategies and polices for their cities,
including: Restrictions on Alcohol Advertising, Deemed Approved, and Social Host Ordinances.
What YOU can DO:
1. Never serve alcohol to youth under age 21.
2. Get to know your teens friends and how to reach their parents.
3. Connect with other parents and agree to notify each other a parent who serves alcohol to minors.
4. Set clear expectations and consequences together with your teen.
5. Participate in prevention education activities and events.
6. Support local prevention efforts by connecting with RAD!
However, the negative public health and safety consequences of increased access to marijuana are expected to disproportionately impact youth and low income communities of color.
Consider the negative public health impacts Prop 64 will have on our communities:
#1: Youth are one of the groups most at risk for harms associated with regular marijuana use.
25% of youth in LA County aged 12-17 report that they already use marijuana according to an assessment conducted by Rethinking Access to Marijuana. Prop 64 would further expand access to youth under age 21 in an unprecedented way. Community-based organizations oppose Prop 64 because the risks to the health, development and safety of youth and young adults is too great. Prop. 64 would actually create new crimes and calls for jail time for youth for a host of new offenses. Public health providers acknowledge that social and physical conditions within communities play a major role in shaping the health and well-being of community members, especially youth, and it is unfair to criminalize youth for a behavior that has become social norm, especially if we make access even easier. Additionally, increased exposure to marijuana seems to correlate to increased youth use. According to a nationwide survey of young adults ages 18 to 25, children of parents who smoke marijuana are more than three times more likely to use it themselves.
#2: Marijuana has been decriminalized in CA since 2014.
Prop. 47 which passed in 2014 has already decriminalized simple possession of almost all drugs, including marijuana, and possession of marijuana has already been reduced from a felony to a misdemeanor in CA. As a result, California has already drastically reduced all drug-related arrests and the prison population across the state. In Los Angeles County, drug arrests fell one-third just in the first year, made nearly 10,000 inmates eligible for re-sentencing, and thousands others have already been released. Prop. 64 would actually create new crimes and calls for jail time for a host of new offenses for young adults, and we can expect communities of color and young adults under 21 in particular will be targeted.
#3: Prop. 64 does not ear-mark any specific revenue for youth or adult prevention education
Only "remaining funds" make mention of youth drug prevention and education, none of which are guaranteed funds. Prevention is basically left out and is an after-thought in this law. This is unfair to low income communities of color who are still dealing with problems associated with liquor stores at every corner, and high rates of addiction to alcohol and other drugs.
#4: Prop. 64 would increase "drugged driving" and drug-related traffic fatalities.
Drug-related traffic fatalities have more than doubled in Washington and Colorado since regulation. Law enforcement is not currently aware of any standard measurement that can be used to measure intoxication of marijuana as exists for alcohol, and this law does not address this serious safety concern.
#5: Prop 64. would undermine restrictions on smoking advertising.
Tobacco ads have been banned from television for decades, but Proposition 64 will allow marijuana smoking ads in prime time, and on programs with millions of children and teenage viewers. The risk of second hand smoke and lung cancer rates could also increase.
Other things Prop 64 would do:
- Create two new taxes for cultivation and retail price
- Fund medical mariujana research
- Create Bureau of Marijuana Control.
- Allow smoking in a private home or business licensed for marijuana consumption.
- Allow Californians age 21 and over to possess up to 28.5 grams of marijuana, 8 grams of concentrated marijuana,
- Allow Californians age 21 and over to grow up to 6 plants within a private home if locked and in a non visible area.
- Authorizes re-sentencing and destruction of records for prior marijuana convictions
- Smoking would remain illegal while driving a vehicle, public places, on school grounds or anywhere children may be present.
- Businesses will only be able to sell marijuana with a state license and possibly a local license while not selling within 600 feet of where children may be present: school, day care, youth center.
What can we do if Prop 64 passes?
Support responsible local public health policies in your cities!
The progress of the marijuana ordinance in the San Gabriel Valley has been successful. Many of the cities within the San Gabriel Valley have decided to prohibit any type of Marijuana dispensing or delivery through the Medical Marijuana Regulation & Safety Act. This ordinance includes the following and is described as such…
“In enacting the Medical Marijuana Regulation & Safety Act (hereinafter, "MMRSA"), the California Legislature added Section 11362.777 to the Health & Safety Code (hereinafter, "Section 11362.777"). Subsection (c)(4) of Section 11362.777 provides in full that:
If a city, county, or city and county does not have land use regulations or ordinances regulating or prohibiting the cultivation of marijuana, either expressly or otherwise under principles of permissive zoning, or chooses not to administer a conditional permit program pursuant to this section, then commencing March 1, 2016, the division shall be the sole licensing authority for medical marijuana cultivation applicants in that city, county, or city and county.
Thus, Section 11362.777 clearly requires the California Department of Food & Agriculture (hereinafter, "CDFA") to act as the "sole licensing authority" for applicants seeking to conduct medical cannabis cultivation under MMRSA if a local government fails to affirmatively regulate or prohibit medical cannabis cultivation by March 1, 2016. See Bus. & Profs. Code § 19300.5(w) ('"Licensing authority' means the state agency responsible for the issuance, renewal, or reinstatement of the license, or the state agency authorized to take disciplinary action against the license."). In other words, rather than requiring medical cannabis cultivators to possess both a state license and local permit, Section 11362.777 allows medical cannabis cultivators under MMRSA to only possess a state license if a local government fails to affirmatively regulate or prohibit medical cannabis cultivation by March 1, 2016. However, the plain language of Section 11362.777 is unclear whether local governments permanently lose their authority to regulate medical cannabis cultivation if they fail to act by March 1, 2016.”
This has become a debating issue within local communities, due to the fact that this bill also limits patients who have a medical license to will not gain access to medical marijuana for their conditions. Overall, the cities within the San Gabriel Valley have decided to prohibit all delivery and dispensing services argue that it will help reduce/prevent crime into their areas and reduce usage. Given that there has been an extension to the decision date, these cities have the option to change their opinion and open to more discussion about this issue.
RAD updates from across the SGV.
Extreme Ritualistic Alcohol Consumption