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It’s that time of year again, when the sun is always shining, the birds are out and the flowers are in bloom. The time that most students look forward to all year -- springtime. And while this season brings warm weather and pretty flowers, it also poses a risk for our youth. The spring time brings about many events such as spring break and prom, but probably the most important one being graduation. Unfortunately, this celebration is all too often destroyed by teens using alcohol and other drugs.

Every year we hear the heart-wrenching stories of kids who are hurt or worse, killed, as a result of getting too out of hand during or after graduation festivities.

Our client, DrugFreeAZ.org offer some helpful tips to use when talking with your teens about the dangers of drugs and alcohol. Here are some ideas to help you get started:

  1. Be sure you know your child’s complete itinerary for the evening, including who they will be with and phone numbers where they can be contacted.
  2. Determine a fair curfew that is based on your child’s previous history of responsibility.
  3. Take stock of all the alcohol and prescription drugs in your home.
  4. Communicate with other parents to create a unified force against alcohol and drugs.
  5. Know who is driving and ensure the driver will remain sober for the entire evening.
  6. Establish a couple of mandatory call-in times; these will help know where your kids are.
  7. Give your child the unconditional option of calling you at any time for help or advice which includes picking them up if needed. Create a code word that your child can use to indicate that they need your assistance.
  8. Talk to your child about the risks of alcohol and drug use. Kids who learn about the risks of drugs from their parents are up to half as likely to use drugs.

Please urge your children to always use their best judgment when celebrating this special moment. For more information on ways to keep your child safe, please visit www.drugfreeaz.org.

Brittany Richardson
Brittany Richardson
A former HMA Public Relations employee.

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