Children of parents who talk to their teens regularly about drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs than those who don't, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations.

Drugs and Crime

Objective
To analyze the effects of tobacco, alcohol, and other drug use on crime rates and the economy.

Background
Youths between the ages of 12 to 14 are becoming more aware of their environments and their communities.

Activities
Explain that drug use costs the United States billions of dollars every year. Much of this money is spent on law enforcement, rehabilitation, and prevention education. Point out that a portion of taxes that students' parents pay goes to support institutions involved in fighting the drag war-military, police, prisons, hospitals-and in preventing drug use-schools, social services, research institutions, and others.

Discuss the following:
• How do students feel about their families' having to pay for the effects of drug use?
• How else could this money be used? (examples: youth programs, educational loans, scientific research)
• How else could the United States get money to deal with the drug problem? (examples: raise taxes, use money confiscated from drug sellers)
• How would students solve the drug problem?

Have students complete the worksheet "Drugs and Crime. "

Go over information and responses on worksheet.

Resources
Worksheet.

Teacher Tips
• "Drugs and Crime" Answer Key:

(1) 486,000 people
(2) 6,000 suicides
(3) $150; $1,050
(4) 3,500,000 arrests 7,500,000 arrests
(5) 17,000 accidents
(6) $98 billion

Source
Learning to Live Drug-Free, A Curriculum Model for Prevention, U.S. Department of Education's Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program

2490 Coral Way, Miami, FL 33145 | Phone: 800-705-8997

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