Public health efforts alone cannot solve the increasing substance abuse problem among youth. Because the causes of youth substance abuse are multifaceted, the solution requires a broad-based approach that considers the community and environment that people live in. Hudson Youth Substance Abuse Prevention (YSAP) initiative is not about introducing a new program. It’s about permanent community transformation to support healthy decision-making among Hudson youth.
Hudson YSAP will focus on youth substance abuse prevention through using an ecological framework that includes community engagement, environmental changes, and school-based programs. These efforts will require us to create alliances that include traditional as well as non-traditional partners such as youth, families, local and regional government, schools, youth-serving organizations, the business community, and others. Hudson YSAP envisions a movement to create sustainable partnerships among these sectors that will allow Hudson to garner the support needed to implement these strategic initiatives.
Hudson Youth Substance Abuse Prevention (YSAP) will work to create alliances that include traditional as well as non-traditional partners such as youth, families, local and regional government, schools, youth-serving organizations, the business community, and others. This coalition will assist us in being responsive and effective, and to provide culturally-competent content that meets existing and emerging needs in Hudson, as well as ensure a broad exchange of information and increased awareness.
To reduce environmental risk factors that promote adolescent substance use, Hudson YSAP assesses current risk factors, conducts various educational campaigns, and facilitates policy/regulation changes to reduce these risk factors. Current strategies include:
- Establish a permanent medication take-back kiosk at the Hudson Police Department
- American Medicine Chest Challenge
- Revise our tobacco control regulation
- Partner with neighboring communities to create a new tobacco control district
Hudson YSAP will build on input from The Coalition,Town of Hudson, Hudson Public Schools, and Massachusetts Department of Public Health to help facilitate and implement strategies and activities in Hudson High School and Quinn Middle School. Strategies include supporting the Hudson Public Schools curriculum working group; supporting the implementation of new wellness courses beginning in the 2013-2014 school year; promoting the expansion of Red Ribbon Week; supporting efforts to increase screening for youth substance use, prevention, intervention, and referrals to treatment; and establishing peer and family support groups.