Vol. 10, No. 1  August 1998

This is your brain...

On July 9, the White House and Partnership for a Drug Free America went national with a five-year, $2 billion anti-drug media campaign targeting youth. This national campaign is the largest government-sponsored advertising effort in history and will include TV, radio, print, internet messages, and more. Everything, apparently, except alcohol.

We believe this omission fails to advance ONDCP’s mission to reduce drug use in America. It amounts to little more than accommodation of the advertising industry and its alcohol and tobacco clients and their supporters in Congress. ONDCP has a mandate to reduce the use of illicit drugs among young people. Alcohol is an illicit drug for the one-third of the American population that is younger than 21 years. The first objective of ONDCP’s national strategy calls for preventing alcohol, tobacco, and illicit drug use among young people. Alcohol is the most used drug by young people in this country and the drug that kills more young people than all other drugs combined.

CSPI and other coalition members have met with leaders from ONDCP and the Department of Health and Human Services to encourage the inclusion of alcohol prevention messages in this celebrated campaign. Our efforts will continue. We encourage you to contact your U.S. Senators and Representatives to educate them about the necessary inclusion of alcohol in ONDCP’s media campaign. For more information, see <www.cspinet.org/booze/drugwar.htm>.

"There’s no question that the worst drug among adolescents right now from any standpoint is alcohol."

General Barry McCaffrey, Director
Office of National Drug Control Policy
Alcohol Policies XI Conference, May 1998

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