CONTRIBUTED BY MADD
Mothers Against Drunk Driving® (MADD) Colorado and presenting sponsor State Farm® are encouraging all teens to #ProtectUrSquad this graduation season by making a pledge to not drink alcohol or consume cannabis under age 21. Teens can promote the #ProtectUrSquad hashtag on social media and encourage their peers to make healthy choices while celebrating the end of the school year.
#ProtectUrSquad is part of MADD’s Power of You(th)® program, sponsored by State Farm, to empower teens to make smart, healthy choices and resist peer pressure to drink or consume cannabis before age 21. As part of Power of You(th)®, MADD joins its partners around the country to host school and community events and highlight tips and real-life examples of underage substance use consequences from MADD’s teen booklet and on the powerofyouth.com website.
“Young people who drink are a danger to themselves, their friends and others,” said MADD National President Helen Witty. “My daughter’s life ended when a 17-year-old made the deadly decision to drink alcohol and smoke marijuana – then get behind the wheel of a car with a group of her friends. My daughter, Helen Marie, had just turned 16 when she was struck while rollerblading on a bike path just a few blocks from home. She died a sudden, violent death. Her teen killer went to prison. Countless lives changed forever, including mine. MADD is grateful to State Farm for helping share the important message that teen alcohol use alters – and takes – lives. About 4,300 teens die each year from this epidemic. Two out of three of these deaths do not involve a vehicle.”
This year’s focus, #Protect -UrSquad, is about encouraging youth groups to support each other by agreeing as a group to avoid underage drinking and never ride with someone who has been drinking or consuming cannabis.
“State Farm is proud to support MADD and the Power of You(th)® program in their efforts to help keep teens safe,” said Tamara Pachl, Public Affairs Specialist with State Farm. “We encourage teens to take a stand by sharing positive messages, engaging their high schools and friends, and helping to promote safe and healthy communities.”
Cannabis and alcohol are drugs associated with serious developmental problems for those consuming these substances under the age of 21 while the brain and body are still in a rapid period of development.
“Please have fun, but keep yourself and your friends safe by not drinking alcohol or consuming cannabis under the age of 21,” Witty said. “This is a season of celebration. Let’s keep it that way.”
View the Power of You(th) booklet and learn more at www.powerofyouth.com.
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