For Immediate Release
(212) 613-8020, firstname.lastname@example.org
National Institute on Drug Abuse Releases 2011 Teen Drug Use Survey
Monitoring the Future Survey Finds Cigarette and Alcohol Use at Historic Lows, with Marijuana Use Holding Steady
WASHINGTON - The federal government's National Institute on Drug Abuse released its annual Monitoring the Future survey today. Cigarette and alcohol use continued their long-term decline, reaching their lowest point since the survey began polling teenagers in 1975. Another notable finding is the inclusion of synthetic marijuana in the survey for the first time. While past-year marijuana use rates held steady at 36.4 percent among 12th graders, 11.4 percent of 12th-graders reported past-year use of synthetic marijuana.
Below is a statement from Jag Davies, publications manager of the Drug Policy Alliance:
SCROLL TO CONTINUE WITH CONTENT
Our Summer Campaign Is Underway
Support Common Dreams Today
Independent News and Views Putting People Over Profit
"The decline in cigarette smoking is great news – not just because it's the most deadly drug but also because it reveals that legal regulation and honest education are more effective than prohibition and criminalization. It's absurd, though, that the survey doesn't also include the fiscal, health and human costs of arresting more than 1.6 million Americans each year on drug charges, including more than 750,000 for marijuana possession alone. Rather than measuring success based on slight fluctuations in drug use, the primary measure of the effectiveness of our nation's drug policies should be the reduction of drug-related harm. A rational drug policy would prioritize reducing the problems associated with drug misuse itself – such as overdose, addiction and disease transmission – and the problems associated with drug prohibition, such as mass incarceration, erosion of civil liberties, and egregious racial disparities in enforcement, prosecution and sentencing. Looking at use rates in a vacuum is missing the forest for the trees."
This is the world we live in. This is the world we cover.
Because of people like you, another world is possible. There are many battles to be won, but we will battle them together—all of us. Common Dreams is not your normal news site. We don't survive on clicks. We don't want advertising dollars. We want the world to be a better place. But we can't do it alone. It doesn't work that way. We need you. If you can help today—because every gift of every size matters—please do. Without Your Support We Won't Exist.
Please select a donation method:
DPA Network is the nation's leading organization working to end the war on drugs. We envision new drug policies based on science, compassion, health and human rights and a just society in which the fears, prejudices and punitive prohibitions of today are no more.