Pubdate: Sun, 10 Aug 2008
Source: Alamogordo Daily News (NM)
Copyright: 2008 Alamogordo Daily News
Author: Julie Roberts, Drug Policy Alliance New Mexico
Cited: Drug Policy Alliance New Mexico
Bookmark: (Students - United States)
Bookmark: (Drug Testing)


DeForest Rathbone mischaracterizes opposition to random student drug
testing in his letter (re: Drug testing tackles serious problems, Aug.
3). The Drug Policy Alliance New Mexico joins thousands of other
teachers, parents, and school officials in addition to the American
Academy of Pediatrics and the National Education Association in
opposing student drug testing because the programs are potentially

Rathbone also neglects to address the only national, peer-reviewed
study ever conducted on random student drug testing which compared
94,000 students in almost 900 U.S. schools with and without a drug
testing program and found virtually no difference in illegal drug use.
Random student drug testing does not prevent drug use or addiction,
and can actually promote more unhealthy behaviors in young people such
as less positive attitudes toward school, and eroded trust between
students and adults.

We must adopt policies that provide science-based drug education
promoting open and honest communication with young people. We must
also make sure that we support our students who do get in trouble with
drugs by providing counseling, substance abuse treatment, and other
supportive services.

Truly effective drug prevention is more than just a video, or a day
spent discussing drugs at school, or an unproductive drug testing
policy. We all want healthy students, families, and communities, and
this begins by building a network of trust, support, and honest drug
education to help our young people succeed.

Editor's note: Drug Policy Alliance New Mexico is a not-for-profit
organization promoting drug policies based on science, compassion,
health and human rights. 
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