Safety First, a Reality Based Approach to Drug Education, Now Available in Chinese: Booklet Presents an Alternative to Simplistic, Ineffective “Just Say No” Drug Education Models

Press Release October 27, 2004
Media Contact

Camilla Field at (415) 921-4987 or Tony Newman at (212) 613-8026

SAN FRANCISCO — A growing number of community organizations in San Francisco have signed on to distribute Safety First: A Reality-Based Approach to Teens, Drugs, and Drug Education and Getting Real About Teens and Drugs in Chinese.

This Saturday, October 30, at the Annual Chinatown Community Health Fair, Asian Perinatal Advocates (APA), Asian American Recovery Services (AARS), Community Youth Center, and Chinese Community Health Plan (CCHP) will all distribute the translated Safety First print materials at their booths. These community groups, as well as Richmond Area Multiservices (RAMS), and Wu Yee Children Services, will also distribute both booklets on an ongoing basis at their community centers, ensuring that Chinese-speaking parents can easily access these important materials.

“We’re looking forward to partnering with the community groups who have taken leadership to keep young people safe,” said Marsha Rosenbaum, director of the Safety First project. “Our combined efforts will ensure that Chinese parents have access to these valuable resources.”

The Safety First booklet and Getting Real brochure, published by the Drug Policy Alliance and written by Drs. Marsha Rosenbaum and Rodney Skager, provide parents of adolescents with comprehensive, balanced information about teens and drugs, as well as strategies for protecting their teens from drug abuse. Despite years of the government’s abstinence-only, “Just Say No” drug education, half of American teenagers have experimented with an illegal drug by the time they graduate from high school.

“While we stress the value of abstinence, we need a fallback strategy for those who say ‘maybe’ or ‘yes’ to drugs,” said Rosenbaum. “We need a strategy that embraces safety as its bottom line.”

The San Francisco Foundation, a community-based foundation, awarded the Alliance $10,000 to translate its print materials from English to Chinese this past summer. The 12-month grant covers the cost of the translation, as well as the majority of the cost to produce 10,000 copies of both the booklet and brochure.

This recent financial grant to the Alliance bolstered its efforts to disseminate reality-based drug education to Chinese-speaking parents in the San Francisco Bay Area. This is the latest vote of confidence for the groundbreaking Safety First project, which is also an allied agency of the California State PTA, a major distribution channel for Safety First.

The Alliance is the nation’s leading non-profit advocacy for sensible drug policies based on science, compassion, health, and human rights. The Drug Policy Alliance is cognizant of the deluge of propaganda and bad drug policy. In response, the Alliance leads the nation in providing practical information about how to prevent drug abuse, information that crosses all cultures in American society. As drug abuse effects every community, the ever-growing Chinese-speaking population in the Bay Area will certainly benefit from having these materials available to them.

A young woman holds a sign that says "End the Drug War."

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