Schuyler County Coalition on Underage Drinking and Drugs
Volume 3, Issue 2, January 2017
Fall Planning Retreat
The SCCUDD Fall Planning Retreat was held at the Watkins Glen Harbor Hotel on Monday, November 14th from 3-5 pm. A total of 38 people attended the Retreat. Local dignitaries Congressman Reed's District Director Alison Hunt, Schuyler County Legislator's Dennis Fagan, Carl Blowers, and Van Harp, Town of Tyrone Board Member Tom Allen, Town of Montour Clerk Deb Riley, and Town of Montour Board Member TJ Riley were also in attendance.
The SCCUDD Action Plan, Sustainability Plan, and By-Laws were voted on by members and approved.
STAND presented on the Over-the-Counter (OTC) Medicine Safety Program. SCCUDD was the only coalition in New York State asked to participate in this pilot program. The OTC Medicine Safety Program consists of four, 40 minute classes geared towards students in 5th and 6th grade. The Retreat attendees received a short lesson on how to read a drug fact label, the difference between prescription and over-the-counter medicine, safe storage locations, and medicine responsibility.
Schuyler County District Attorney Joe Fazzary presented on the State of Drug Use in Schuyler County. In 2014 Schuyler County had 15 felony drug cases. That number increased to 27 in 2015. Fazzary estimates a total of 70-80 solved felony drug cases already this year. Fazzary states that “the scariest drug we have is heroin”. People are choosing heroin over prescription pain relievers because it is cheap and easy to get. Fazzary ended his presentation talking about Schuyler County’s greatest issue: methamphetamine, making up for more than half of this year’s felony drug cases. He described its wide use, the hazardous ingredients involved in its production as well as its effects on the body.
Congressman Reed’s District Director Alison Hunt presented Certificates of Special Recognition to youth committee members Kelsey Kernan, Alexus Niver, and Amber Updike for teaching the OTC Medicine Safety Program. They also received Shining Star Recognition Awards from SCCUDD.
The presentations from STAND and Joe Fazzary can be seen here.
Pictured above: Schuyler County District Attorney Joe Fazzary
Pictured above: Amber Updike, Alexus Niver, and Kelsey Kernan
SCCUDD and STAND participate in the Dose of Prevention Contest
In October, SCCUDD and STAND hosted an educational event and implemented an integrated marketing and communication campaign in order to participate in the CADCA Dose of Prevention Contest. The winner of this contest receives a $1,500 cash award for their coalition and one full scholarship for the National Leadership Forum. The winning coalition will also be recognized at the National Leadership Forum.
Members of STAND began implementing the CADCA Medicine Safety Youth Educators Pilot Program in county schools to educate 5th and 6th graders about medicine safety.
The Coalition used social media, news outlets, and brochures to educate the community about medicine safety. Posts from the NMAAM toolkit were utilized on our Facebook and Twitter pages. PSA's regarding medicine cabinet security were disseminated to local news outlets and picked up by three of the major media outlets in the county. Brochures on Preventing Teen Cough Medicine Abuse were disseminated to agencies within our county.
SCCUDD Recognized as a Coalition in Action by CADCA! Article Below
Pictured Above: Schuyler County teens completing their Lead & Seed training
Schuyler County Coalition on Underage Drinking and Drugs
“We’re All In This Together!”
“Underage drinking was a major issue in our community when our coalition – Schuyler County Coalition on Underage Drinking and Drugs (SCCUDD) –was launched in 2006,” affirms SCCUDD’s Project Coordinator, Casey Allen. While it is the second least populated county in New York State, at the time, it had:
Two times the state rate of youth DWI arrests
Two times the state rate of unintentional injuries and death
Three times the state rate of youth on probation with alcohol involvement
A high rate of youth injured in alcohol-related motor vehicle accidents
“We’ve come a long way since then, addressing not only alcohol abuse, but tobacco control, opioid misuse, heroin abuse and more,” affirms Allen. Earlier this week, CADCA had the opportunity to interview Allen and School Liaison, Kali Beilman-Martin about SCCUDD’s accomplishments.
Schuyler County is a small, picturesque community in the Finger Lakes region of New York with a population of less than 20,000. The community is located in the heart of New York's wine country and is home to a large number of wineries and distilleries. Where other coalitions might view this as a barrier, SCCUDD rises to the challenge due to its eager, passionate and engaged membership, many of whom are involved in the daily lives of Schuyler County youth.
SCCUDD’s goal is to prevent, reduce and delay the onset of substance use among Schuyler County youth by collaborating with community partners, promoting prevention education and substance-free activities and implementing environmental strategies. Since receiving Drug-Free Communities funding, SCCUDD has worked to improve coalition capacity and implement new youth-training programs, informational forums and products, youth-designed prevention events and more. Some of its greatest achievements include:
Schuyler Teens against Alcohol, Nicotine & other Drugs (STAND): SCCUDD’s youth coalition, STAND, was launched in the spring of 2015, after SCCUDD sponsored a Lead & Seed training in the community, and the students have been busy ever since! One of their recent activities was to create and disseminate the Voices of Our Youth Survey through a collaboration with SADD. This survey was designed to gain a better understanding of student beliefs and practices concerning alcohol consumption. Sixty-eight students in grades 7-12 participated, and their feedback was presented at a community forum during Alcohol Awareness Month. “We like to base our interventions and initiatives on survey results and other data collected” affirms Allen. Here are some of the findings:
Voices of Our Youth Survey Findings
Of the students who reported that they have consumed alcohol, 60.2% said that they consume or have consumed alcohol with an adult.
9.52% of 7th grade students felt they were expected to drink alcohol by their community and 14.29% felt that underage drinking was accepted by their community.
71.43% of 11th and 12th graders felt that underage drinking was expected of them by their community and 85.71% felt that underage drinking was accepted by their community.
Across all grades, students said that their families were the least accepting of underage drinking.
Students concluded that there was a lot that they could do to reduce underage drinking, including talking with friends and families about the harmful effects of underage drinking; alerting the community Tip Line to report questionable activities and behaviors; and staying engaged and encouraging others to participate in STAND and SADD.
STAND has also taken the lead in implementing Scholastic’s Medicine Safety Youth Educators Program. “Using the Over-the-Counter Medicine Safety Program curriculum, our peer educators have taught 27 5th-6th graders and 50 adults. For some of our facilitators, this is the first time they’ve spoken in front of large groups,” says SCCUDD’s School Liaison Kali Beilman-Martin. “It’s a win/win. The response to the program has been outstanding, and mastering the curriculum gives our high school educators confidence which will benefit them for a lifetime.” Additionally, STAND has:
Branded the PowerPoint presentation to ensure community relevancy
Created a script for the high school students to follow, ensuring that key questions and answered are consistently addressed
Incentivized the middle schoolers with coalition-branded giveaways
Collaboration with Southern Tier Tobacco Awareness Coalition (STTAC): Because of the coalition’s work with STTAC, the community now has one more smoke-free, multi-unit housing option. SCCUDD and STTAC are also addressing point of sale advertising of tobacco products and have launched a tobacco-free pharmacy initiative.
Strong Social Media Presence: Coalition leadership believes in the power of social media. SCCUDD launched comprehensive social media campaigns to commemorate Alcohol Awareness Month in April 2016 and last month during National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month. The coalition most recently provided Facebook Live coverage of their annual meeting including student presentations on the Medicine Safety Youth Educators Program and the District Attorney’s presentation on the State of Drug Use in Schuyler County, and this last effort yielded 1000 hits, which says a lot for this small community!
We’re All In This Together: When SCCUDD needs to mobilize around specific issues, the coalition has the tools to do so. SCCUDD has all of the key players at the planning table, including directors and representatives of government and community organizations. Also, present at the table are concerned community members including youth, parents, and business owners.
Allen’s advice to other coalitions: “Reaching a common goal takes time. Bring the right people to the table, and remember that small steps can make significant impact. Even if you feel like you’re not getting anywhere, you are.” affirms Allen.
Indeed SCCUDD’s efforts are paying off. “As compared to 2013 data, perception of risk is up for some substances. Parental and friend disapproval of alcohol and other drug misuse is up for alcohol, tobacco, marijuana, and prescription drugs. Additionally, perception of alcohol, tobacco and marijuana availability is down among youth,” affirms Allen. “We also found, in a survey of community adults, a little more than 70% of respondents were supportive of enacting a social host ordinance and adding beer gardens at community events. All promising news,” says Allen.
SCCUDD Participates in the Know More Before You Pour Contest
In December SCCUDD participated in the CADCA/NIAAA Know More Before You Pour Social Media Contest. Coalitions were asked to create no more than three social media graphics and a dissemination plan for them using the NIAAA Fact Sheet provided to them. SCCUDD created three animated social media graphics. The plan is to disseminated these graphics during the month of April which is Alcohol Awareness Month. A panel of judges will choose ten coalitions to win a $1,000 cash award. Some of that money must go towards the communication plan. Look for the three animated graphics making their debut in April!
Shining Star Recognition Award
In December, SCCUDD presented a Shining Star Recognition Award to the Odessa File. They received this award due to their commitment to the community. Their commitment to publish SCCUDD activities showed their interest in improving the health of children and teens in Schuyler County. For this reason, SCCUDD has chosen the Odessa File as a Shining Star Recognition Award recipient. On behalf of the Schuyler County Coalition on Underage Drinking and Drugs (SCCUDD) Executive Board, staff, and volunteers, we thank the Odessa File for their efforts in making the community a healthier and safer place.
Meet a Member Get to know the people in SCCUDD
Name: Marcia Kasprzyk Occupation: Public Health Director and a Registered Nurse Why did you decide to join SCCUDD: Public Health completed their 2006 Community Health Assessment and was concerned with the large number unintentional injuries due to Alcohol in our youth (14-24year olds). So we invited Law Enforcement (county and village), DA, Probation, FLACRA, Alcohol Council, Schuyler Hospital, DSS, Schools and Mental Health together to discuss. Plus, alcohol use and abuse scored in the top five health concerns in all the S²AY counties during that same Community Health Assessment cycle. Hobbies: Quilting, knitting, reading historical novels, and vegetable gardening Favorite Food: Green salads, shrimp, and soft old fashion sugar cookies Do you have any pets: Two cats Eleanor and Roosevelt (Elly and Rosy for short) What is one interesting thing people should know about you? I really enjoy quilting and often attend quilting retreats.
The youth of STAND are pleased to announce that they are one of ten organizations to receive a 2016 R.A.C.E. Foundation grant. The SCCUDD subcommittee was awarded the Esses Award of Excellence grant in order to develop a Prom Night Safety Program. The concept for this program comes from local youth themselves who have asked to have more substance-free events to attend and have already been fundraising towards this goal. While the program will be aimed at this year’s current Junior and Senior classes and their Prom dates, it is hoped that activities can be continued on a yearly basis and positively affect students for years to come.
In collaboration with other high school youth from local clubs and organizations, including SADD and Reality Check, STAND has begun initial planning for the Prom Night Safety Program such as identifying community partners, possible venues, and activities that will be appealing to their fellow students. While the grant from the R.A.C.E. Foundation will go a long way towards implementing the program, additional resources and support are needed to make this a successful event.
There are many ways community members of all ages and talents can help with the Prom Night Safety Program. Youth of all ages and interested adults are welcome to attend STAND’s next planning meeting on January 5th, 3:00pm, to see how their talents or resources can be utilized. For more information please contact the SCCUDD school liaison, Kali Beilman-Martin at (607) 962-8459 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thursday, January 5, 2017 STAND Planning Meeting 3pm
(Contact Kali Beilman-Martin for more information at
607-962-8459 or email@example.com.)
Tuesday, January 17, 2017 Coalition Meeting from 3-4:30pm
at the Shared Services Building Conference Room
Tuesday, March 21, 2017 Coalition Meeting from 3-4:30pm
at the Shared Services Building Conference Room
On behalf of the Executive Board, Staff, and Volunteers we want to thank you for all that you have done for SCCUDD this past year and we want to wish you all a Happy New Year! We are looking forward to working with all of you in 2017!