Priority Problem = Alcohol
After extensively surveying both youth and parents in the community on substance abuse issues in Newtown, NPC identified alcohol as the priority substance problem to be addressed. According to 2013 youth surveys, at the town, state and national levels, alcohol was identified as the most used substance by youth.
NPC works on many drug prevention issues within the community including the prevention of alcohol, tobacco and other drugs.
2017 data confirmed that alcohol is still the most used substance among youth in Newtown.
The Department of Mental Health and Addition Services [DMHAS] assists in funding this effort under the Connecticut Strategic Prevention Framework Coalitions Initiative [CSC].
At-Risk Teens between the ages of 12-18
NPC serves the community of Newtown, specifically youth and families. The prime target is at-risk teens between the ages of 12-18; specifically middle school and high school age youth with a focus on youth who are in critical transition years.
Why Does this problem exist in Newtown?
Teenagers gain access to alcohol easily in the community. Newtown students obtain it most commonly from friends, at a party, from home (without parents permission), or other people buy it for them.
Norms are the spoken and unspoken rules of cultures. Reinforced over time, they operate as invisible constraints on family members’ behavior. Norms set standards for how family members dress, talk and act. Family norms that encourage and/or accept drinking are high in Newtown.