21 USC 1521 - Findings

Congress finds the following:
(1) Substance abuse among youth has more than doubled in the 5-year period preceding 1996, with substantial increases in the use of marijuana, inhalants, cocaine, methamphetamine, LSD, and heroin.
(2) The most dramatic increases in substance abuse has occurred among 13- and 14-year-olds.
(3) Casual or periodic substance abuse by youth today will contribute to hard core or chronic substance abuse by the next generation of adults.
(4) Substance abuse is at the core of other problems, such as rising violent teenage and violent gang crime, increasing health care costs, HIV infections, teenage pregnancy, high school dropouts, and lower economic productivity.

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(5) Increases in substance abuse among youth are due in large part to an erosion of understanding by youth of the high risks associated with substance abuse, and to the softening of peer norms against use.
(A) Substance abuse is a preventable behavior and a treatable disease; and
(i) during the 13-year period beginning with 1979, monthly use of illegal drugs among youth 12 to 17 years of age declined by over 70 percent; and
(ii) data suggests that if parents would simply talk to their children regularly about the dangers of substance abuse, use among youth could be expected to decline by as much as 30 percent.
(7) Community anti-drug coalitions throughout the United States are successfully developing and implementing comprehensive, long-term strategies to reduce substance abuse among youth on a sustained basis.
(8) Intergovernmental cooperation and coordination through national, State, and local or tribal leadership and partnerships are critical to facilitate the reduction of substance abuse among youth in communities throughout the United States.