There isn’t a day that goes by that we don’t see a drug related issue in the news. If you ask your kids how many kids they know doing drugs, I’m sure, if they’re being honest, that they’ll say many. It may even be your kid.
For those who think no, not my kid, never, I’m not going to tell you differently, but I will tell you that your kid most likely knows some of those kids. It isn’t just pot and it isn’t just alcohol; its pills.
Maybe they came from your medicine cabinet. Maybe they bought them at school, but they are buying them and at some point that will have an impact on your family whether it is a rise in crime, someone you love who’s life it touches, tax dollars going towards jails or rehabs, or just the fact that your son or daughter could be going to a party where drugs and alcohol are being consumed.
Peer pressure doesn’t always come in the form of kids pressuring friends to do something they don’t want to do. Sometimes a kid doesn’t want to always be the only one not doing something.
Sometimes they think all those drug awareness lectures were just a bunch of boring words adults were throwing at them, those same adults who post on Facebook how much fun their time in Zappa’s woods was during high school or maybe it was Croon’s or Mary’s Hole. Some of us still remember those glory days and then we lecture our kids on the danger of drugs and alcohol. Some of us lecture as we fill our prescriptions for Xanax, Valium, Vicodin, or whatever it is that eases the pain or takes off the edge.
For all of those who say not my kid, it is somebody’s kid, and maybe that somebody is your friend, your sister, your neighbor. Maybe somebody else’s kid plays with your kid or goes to school with your kid. We hear a story of an overdose and shed a tear, say a prayer, and then go back to our lives sure it could never happen to us. But it does.
is in danger of losing funding. While our local politicians make headlines with proposals to end the drug crisis, they consider cutting funding to a place that has helped thousands of families and our youth. While they speak about printing pamphlets and forming task forces, they let an agency that does something fall victim to politics.
YES is an agency that is there for our local community. This agency has many different programs that address the problems facing our families and our youth. They do it on a sliding-scale basis making it affordable and accessible. Isn’t that the kind of place we would like to continue serving our community?
As it stands now, there are kids who are lost. That’s nothing new. The teenage years are not easy. We could tell them what real problems are, but you’d be surprised at how real some of our local teens’ problems are. Do we want to be the community that stands behind our youth and supports them by being sure funding is secure for agencies like YES?
Or do we want to say not my kid and let funding get cut. Eventually it will affect your kid whether you want to believe it or not. And if it doesn’t, can you sleep at night knowing there are kids out there who need the help that yours is lucky enough not to need? Don’t we all make up this community?
Please contact your legislators. Don’t stop there. Contact all of your elected officials. Tell them our families are important. Our youth is important. We have great schools and great sports programs. Let’s also be the community with a great place that addresses the problems facing our local youth and families. Let’s be the community that realizes the importance of YES Community Counseling Center and insist that it remain intact.
Please feel free to show your support on Monday, June 18 at 11 am at the Nassau County Executive Building. Let our elected officials know that funding our youth and families can only benefit all of us.