Substance Abuse Prevention

Substance Abuse Prevention Substance Abuse Prevention Community Assessment The community that we have chosen to assess is Springfield, Missouri. Springfield is located in Green County in Southwest. According to the USDC, Bureau of the Census in 1999 the population estimate for the Springfield Metropolitan area was 308,332. The annual population growth rate is 1.8% for Springfield. This is compared to 0.6% for the state of Missouri and 1.2% for the United States. Population density of Springfield is 2,068 people per square mile. Comparatively speaking this density is located between the densities of Kansas City (1,397 people per square mile) and St.

Louis (6,406 people per square mile). The average family size of Springfield is 2.96 and the approximate percentage of persons in a family is 77.6%. The age-sex pyramid for Springfield MSA has peaks around 15-24 and 35-44 for both males and females. Overall the chart shows that Springfield has a slow to medium growth pattern. The population of Springfield is predominantly Caucasian while Asians, African-Americans and Hispanics represent a very small percentage of the population. Of the total workforce of 171,577 in Springfield only 3,305 people are unemployed which is 1.9% of the total workforce.

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Since 1990, as a general trend, unemployment rate has dropped from about 5.6% to the current level. According to the Missouri Division of Workforce Development in August 2000 the total breakdown of persons employed by sector is as follows: Number Employed Percentage of workforce Government 19,600 11.4% Services 49,500 28.9% Finance 8,700 5.1% Retail 33,700 19.6% Wholesale 11,100 6.5% Transportation & Utilities 12,800 7.5% Mining & Construction 8,600 5.0% Manufacturing 23,500 13.7% Other 4,077 2.4% According to the Missouri State Census Data Center, the median household income in 1995-1996 was $31,499 and the BEA Per Capita Income was $25,059. There are several major employers in the Springfield MSA. These include Bass Pro Shops, The Battlefield Mall, Tracker Boats, Prime Trucking, Cox North Hospital, Cox South Hospital, Saint Johns Hospital, John Q Hammons Enterprises, as well as several government state and county offices. The Springfield school systems are also a major employer of the city.

The school system is one of the strongest in Missouri. The largest high school, Kickapoo, has received Gold Star and Blue Ribbon national recognition for outstanding secondary schools. The three major problems areas in Springfield are alcohol abuse including dunk driving and use by minors, tobacco use, and use of marijuana primarily among adolescents. These three major problems are influenced by many different risk factors. 1.

Factors contributing to alcohol abuse: The two main problem areas that have been noted within alcohol abuse are drunk driving, and minors consuming alcoholic beverages. It seems that many people who drink and drive do so as a direct act of defiance for the law. Other possible risk factor for drinking and driving include peer pressure, and lack of overall law enforcement which leads to feelings of security. Minors consuming alcohol is a totally different situation. This use generally stems from lack of parental influence, depression, resistance to authority, lack of law enforcement, and easy access to alcohol.

2. Factors contributing to tobacco use: There are several risk factors that lead to the use of tobacco products. Generally people begin using as a result of peer pressure, observation of role models smoking, lack of parental supervision, high tolerance for deviance, and exposure to advertising. 3. Factors contributing to the use of marijuana: A few of these factors are rebelliousness, nonconformity to family values, resistance to authority, relatively easy access, and an overall lack of anti-drug enforcement.

With these three main problems now established, it is important to see the way that various individuals or groups of individuals throughout the community can help to prevent these problems: 1. Individual: The individual is responsible for making productive decisions that will help to get his or her life back on the right path away from any type of abuse or addiction. Also, the individual must be responsible enough to recognize that there is a problem and ask for help if necessary. 2. Peer Group: It is essential that the peer group provide a supportive network for the individual to overcome his or her problems. It is also the responsibility of the peer group to seek help for the individual when necessary.

3. Parental: The parents play a key role if the individual holding the problem is an adolescent. The parent must be able to listen to and communicate with their child about his or her problems. Also, they must be able to provide necessary discipline as is necessary. Finally, the parent must provide a positive role model for his or her child that discourages negative behavior and reinforces behavior that is positive. 4. School/Teacher: The school is responsible for providing effective drug use prevention programs at an early age. This allows the individual to build a strong set of values regarding drug use and abuse that can be held throughout life.

5. Media: The media is widely regarded for its high influence on increased alcohol and tobacco use. It is therefore the responsibility of the media to erase this reputation. They must deliver messages portraying the negative aspects of drug use to allow people to see the true consequences of drug abuse. 6. Others: If outside members of the community condemn the use and abuse of the drugs listed in the main problem areas some of the appeal towards use of the drug will be eliminated. As will a great deal of peer pressure.

In order to combat the three major problems identified in the Springfield area we have formed a coalition named Community Wide Prevention Program (CWPP). Our mission statement is as follows: We the people of the CWPP have come together to increase the coordination between government, industry, schools, service providers, and citizens in the city of Springfield. Together we are going to reduce drug and alcohol use among the people of Springfield and to change the social attitudes regarding substance abuse based on measured drug use data. The people that are part of the CWPP team play an important role and our objectives couldnt be carried out to the fullest extent without their help. The members of the coalition are as follows: Police Chief Wigam Head D.A.R.E. Officer Martin Major Community Business Leader John Q.

Hammons School Superintendent Troutwine Mayor Digler Hospital Administrator Gurian In determining the major problems of Springfield we have discovered many disturbing statistics. The main purpose of our plan is to change these statistics. However, to fully understand our plan we will present you with the detailed problems that we have seen within the community of Springfield within each of our three major problem areas. 1. The abuse of alcohol is a major concern for any community because it has ties with a number of other social concerns.

Alcohol use is a factor in about half of all deaths from motor vehicle crashes, homicides, and suicides. Alcohol abuse is also often linked to spousal abuse and other family violence issues. Alcohol is also a significant contributor to dysfunctional families school dropout and lost economic productivity. One thing that makes alcohol abuse, as well as underage drinking so prevalent is the fact that alcohol is considered a socially approved narcotic. Although DWI and teen DWI rates for Springfield are actually lower than state and national average levels, they are still a major point of concern.

In a recent survey, 3% of the population reports having driven at least once in the past 30 days after consuming too much alcohol. This is quite disturbing considering the fact that they were fully aware of their actions. In a 1997 survey in Greene Coun …