Submitted by The Lopez Island Prevention Coalition
Thanks to data collected in 2018 Healthy Youth Survey, Lopez Island and its sister communities on San Juan and Orcas have shown landmark changes in substance use among youth in San Juan County.
Use of substances such as cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana and illegal drug use has come down significantly over the past 10 years, but 2018 was significant, as trends of use were lower than other youth in the state for the first time in over a decade.
“Which means preventions works, and all the efforts our community has put into reducing substance use among youth is paying off,” said Georgeana Cook, Executive Coordinator of the Lopez Island Prevention Coalition. “ I can’t look at any part of our community, whether it is one of the local business owner or their employees, a member of the faith-based community, our law enforcement officers, our schools, both public and private, media in all it’s forms, parents, county agencies, county administrators the many youth-serving organizations who work tirelessly to make sure our youth have activities, those involved with healthcare, organizations which are civic or volunteer-based, those focused on recovery, who seek to protect or educate or who provide resources or support. Even those who have challenged some of the prevention work being done or information shared. It has taken this entire community several years to bring youth use down. More importantly, I have seen the youth of this community take a defining leadership role in prevention.”
On Friday, April 19, at 7 p.m., local youth invite all community members to meet with them to discuss how to continue in the efforts of drawing the line between youth and illegal use. The event will be held at the Lopez Center.
Follow-up meeting on May 10 at 7 p.m.: Juuling, Vaping and Dabbing. It’s new and is latest way youth are using marijuana and tobacco. Adults are invited to join for discussion about these current methods of use.