Thursday, November 20, 2008

Fall Meeting Notes 2008

Drew Smith, Devel Dir at the Chapel Hill YMCA described the 18,000 sq. ft. Youth Center. The capitol campaign has already raised 1 million of the 5 million needed to build a community place, for teens ranging from 13 to 18 years, to be completed by 2010. This is a community project. The most recent Middle School Madness event was a success. There were over 500 students in attendance. Jerry Whortan, Exec Dir, spoke about the interest and needs he has heard from both parents and students of a multi-cultural community. For more information or to make a donation, contact Jerry or Drew.

Stephanie Willis, Health Coordinator for the CHCCS, spoke about the Youth Risk Behavior Survey. The results are a combination of the standard survey and a survey which includes questions involving attitudes, perceptions and behaviors. Chapel Hill Police participated in a forum which included Administrators, Student Resource Officers and Substance Abuse Staff about increasing awareness of prescription drug use. Efforts have been made to double up efforts and including canines in searches. Both the Drug and Alcohol Awareness Task Force (Carole Groux, Dale Prattt-Wilson and Robin Clark) and the District Substance Abuse Task Force are combining to discuss new additions to the school policy, development of new materials and looking for other ways to get awareness materials to students and families. One policy change that was discussed is that off-campus substance abuse will result in loss of campus parking and off-campus lunchtime privildges.

Eric Smith, UNC Wellness Services, thanked the CHPD for the control at the Halloween celebration. Eric is involved in the review of the policies and finding better ways of enforcing them. He spoke about core survey shows a large reduction in binge drinking. Also, there are more preemptive measures for incoming students. Wellness Services is involved in the development of strategies to help control drinking for at risk students. One of the developments is known as Environment Management for students, faculty and staff. This includes science based strategies, moving towards Social Norming, streamlining policies and enforcement, and one-on-one assessment.

Dan Sykes, Orange County ABC Board, read amounts and percentages of profits that have been donated for alcohol awareness and law enforcement. The strong ties with the CHPD, Carrboro PD and OC Sheriff to perform compliance checks. A vendor has been chosen to supply the I.D. Scanners and a few of the local ABC stores have them installed. Each store has an Education Center, which provides brochures and information on substance abuse. Warning messages about underage drinking are being printed on the bags. Staff is being educated and trained for the responsible service, sale, and consumption of alcohol. The state is analyzing the efficiency by which liquor is sold. A possible outcome of the evaluation is that liquor sales could be removed from current Alcohol Beverage Control operations and privatized for private businesses to control the sale of hard liquor. One of the major issues regarding the privatization of liquor sales was the impact upon revenues provided to local governments. According to NC House Bill 1292, a study was conducted of possible ABC store privatization results. The study was designed to analyze methods other states use to regulate alcohol distribution and discern the feasibility of partial privatization (the state privatizes the retail function but retains the wholesale function of liquor distribution) and full privatization (the state privatizes both the retail and wholesale functions of liquor distribution). Local ABC boards are concerned about the potential loss of revenue to local municipalities.

Carole Groux, CADFT explained the Safe Homes website and the intended use. Currently recruiting teens to raise awareness and to get families involved in making the promise that their home will not be subjected to underage drinkers.

Trish Halsey, Dir Carpe Diem, spoke about Carpe Diem, a Chapel Hill First Offenders Program for Alcohol Violations. This is a six-week, five-session program being run as a pilot. Each session is two hours in length with an average of 16 students. There will be outside assignments and a group community service project. Students will spend a total of 15 hours fulfilling the requirements of Carpe Diem. Groups will focus on risk reduction, stress management, alcohol and drug education, replacement behaviors, self-awareness and effective interpersonal skills. The group has been visited by speakers, such as Matt Sullivan, who spoke about current laws and how they are enforced. In phase II of the program, beginning in 09, more groups will be attending. For more information contact Trish at or call (919) 240-5521. Also, Orange County offers Project Turn Around, for students 16 years or older.

Dale spoke about the Coalition funding from supporting organizations throughout the county. The Underage Drinking Research Initiative has made great strides in building more coalitions for supporting alcohol and drug free communities countrywide. The Alcohol Purchase Surveys are still being conducted and the results are being given to local law enforcement and ALE with a request for a full compliance check using an underage buyer.

The NC Institute of Medicine Task Force on Substance Abuse Services has an Interim Report to the NC General Assembly, as well as the presentation for the Implications for Adolescents by Pam Silberman, JD, DrPH. President & CEONC Institute of Mental Health.

Michael Eisen, NC Dept of MHDDSAS, announced that the NCIoMTF full report should be released in Jan 09. He spoke about the "Price vs. Use" or Usage Fees that help in saving costs to Public Health. He talked about the research being done on the Effects of Alcohol Tax Increases on Alcohol-Related Disease Mortality in Alaska: Time-Series Analyses from 1976 to 2004 done by Dr. Alexander C. Wagenaar in the Amer Jour of Public Health. The cost of underage drinking is estimated at $1.2 billion per year and increasing the tax could raise 80 million per year to support abuse programs. You can view information from the Institute of Medicine. Other links to visit are the Underage Drinking Education Training Center and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

Karen Lewis (minutes missing)

Andrea Hussong, PhD UNC-CH, (minutes missing) is developing a Prevention Program for Young Children living in Alcoholic Families. For more info contact Andrea Hussong at or call (919) 962-2537.

Linda Hammock (minutes missing)

Laura Wenzel, Pa'lante Director (minutes missing). Pa'lante events are posted at Radio Pa'lante 103.5. Click here to hear about their group.