Teen Substance Use Down in 'Drug Free Communities'

A new report from the Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) says that alcohol, tobacco and other drug use rates were lower than national averages in cities and towns with coalitions funded by the Drug Free Communities (DFC) program.

Annual youth marijuana, alcohol and tobacco use in DFC communities was 9.9 percent, 23.3 percent, and 10 percent lower, respectively, than the national average for use of these substances. Trends in current use among DFC communities were compared with national data from the Youth Risk Behavior Surveillance System.

The report also found that youth drug use declined more rapidly in communities with DFC coalitions than the national average.

The 769 DFC coalitions are made of community leaders, parents, youth, teachers, religious and fraternal organizations, health care and business professionals, law enforcement and the media. The DFC program provides grants of up to $625,000 over five years to community organizations that facilitate citizen participation in local drug-prevention efforts.

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