Newspaper Archive of
The Sun Paper
Sheridan , Oregon
October 23, 1991     The Sun Paper
PAGE 5     (5 of 16 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
PAGE 5     (5 of 16 available)        PREVIOUS     NEXT      Full Size Image
October 23, 1991

Newspaper Archive of The Sun Paper produced by SmallTownPapers, Inc.
Website © 2019. All content copyrighted. Copyright Information.     Terms Of Use.     Request Content Removal.

from Page 1 well as perception, Van is some drug use among in sixth through twelfth with alcohol and most commonly used," "Drug and alcohol as the students get age of first usage is Y between eleven and four- use, particularly wine and beer, was reported at all Van Vlack said. Up to of the sixth graders drinking once a month or Percent of the seventh 10 Percent of eighth grad- 21 percent of ninth the tenth to 30 percent of the graders and 33 to 40 per- senior class said they a month or more often, reported. followed alcohol in the ranged from 5 percent 33 percent of the smoked once a month Van Vlack said. Can prove to be and than any other Van Vlack. use also crossed all Van Vlack reported. graders reported monthly Percent said they had tried of the seventh used pot but 3.6 percent graders reported a figure lower than the reported statewide, Van Seven percent of ninth Percent of tenth graders, 2 eleventh graders and no reported monthly use, according to Van of twelfth graders Using marijuana at least followed by 9 per- the eleventh graders, 7 of tenth graders and 3 of the ninth graders, Van Statewide, 12.9 per- eleventh graders reported Use and 2.4 percent said marijuana daily, accord- Vlack. of 12th gra. with someone a friend with a IJroblem .... drugs such as and diet pills fol- tobacco and mari- of use, although may have reported use of the drugs, Van Some use of opiates, tranquilizers, halluino- and steroids was high school Van Vlack said. among eleventh and appears to drop off .results, Van Vlack noted. is because many of the reVolved in drugs have of school and are not the survey," Van Vlack is an important consid- Schools and communities use is often still in is the drug of choice children and legally sold, it is harmful than ille- such as cocaine, Speed, Van Vlack said. however, "can prove to and deadly than Van Vlack said, ccidents cause of death to 19-year-oids. large per- Students reported that : ridden in a car with a Was drinking or using," said. "Forty percent of 28 percent of the 55 percent of the and over 50 percent schoolers reported that had been put in a .and possibly deadly posi- in a car with a driver Under the influence. In .this is a tragedy waiting of many of Sheridan's touched by the drug and around them, Van OUt. the sixth and 49 percent of the 54 percent of the 58 percent of the 61 percent of the and 63 percent of said they either live have a friend, or drug or drinking prob- reported. survey progressed through the grades, the number of students who have a friend with a problem increased," she said. "This would be another indication that the influence of drug and alcohol use increases as children get older." Peers have the greatest influence over choices to drink, smoke or try drugs, followed by parents, Van Vlack reported. "Parents using drugs and alcohol themselves and their relationships with their children influence whether or not their children use alcohol and drugs," Van Vlack said, First-grader Angel Lytle lis- tens at Willamina rally Friday. The Sheridan study revealed that parental attitudes about drugs and drinking appear to relax as young- sters age, Van Vlack reported. Nine percent of sixth graders said their parents had ignored or condoned their drinking, while 17 percent of the senior class reported that atti- tude. A similar change in attitude was recorded regarding tobacco use and attendance at parties where alcohol was served. "Nationwide, this has been an increasing problem, with parents wanting their children to learn about responsible drinking and keeping the lines of communication open," Van Vlack said. "Thus, they cross the line between telling their chil- dren not to drink, becoming fearful that they will drink and thus giving them permission to drink as long as they do so responsibly." Among Sheridan youngsters, Van Viack said, survey results show little difference in drug use between stu- dents highly involved in school and after-school activities and those not involved. She noted, however, that participation in extracurricular activities dropped as youngsters aged and drug use increased. Where is some drug use among students in 6th through 12th grade .... " --Joan Van Vlack. "There is validity, though, to the assumption that students who have been retained in school or don't do well in school and those that don't participate in activities are more likely to use drugs and alcohol," Van Vlack said. "Research has shown that students who work hard in school, are involved in sports and outdoor activities are less likely to use drugs and alcohol as are stu- dents who are in good physical and mental health." Students reported that they learned most about the dangers of drugs and alcohol from school. Over half the middle school young- sters, and 40 to 50 percent of the high schoolers reported that Sheri- dan schools were teaching them the most about the dangers of drugs and drinking, followed by the family, TV, newspapers and the movies, Van Vlack said. Between 22 percent (tenth grade) and 51 percent (eighth grade) of the students said they don't know enough about the effects of drugs and alcohol, Van Vlack added. Van Vlack said the survey would act as a benchmark for further surveys, serving as a means of comparison against future attitudes among youngsters. "The information provides an adequate starting point from which the (Sheridan school) district and the Oregon Together! committee can begin to make recommendations and implement new programs," Van Vlack said. "Together, they can begin to change the attitudes and drug and alcohol use among the children of Sheridan.' A majority of Sheridan's young- sters said they believed that drug and alcohol education should begin in the third grade or lower, Van Vlack noted. Wednesday, October 23, 1991, The Sun 5 Drug-free workplace backed Most local employers don't require tests, survey reveals By Lawrence Monical Staff Writer, The Sun Most West Valley businesses want to be known as drug-free work- places and many have drug and alcohol policies in place, but the majority of them don't test employ- ees for drug use, according to results of a survey performed udder the auspices of the Oregon Together! program in Sheridan. As a result, local volunteers hope to organize an area-wide workshop to inform employers about drug testing procedures in the workplace, organizers of the survey said last week at the Sheridan kickoff of Red Ribbon Week, a national drug- awareness program continuing through Sunday. "It appears that the majority of employers responding to the survey look favorably upon implementing drug testing," said Sheridan doctor James Molloy, who conducted the confidential survey. "But as is often the ease, they just don't know where to begin." Survey results were gleaned from about 95 returned questionnaires out of 189 distributed to West Valley businesses of all sizes, Molloy said at a news conference Oct. 18. The survey sought information about present drug testing in the work- place and about attitudes toward promoting the West Valley as an area concerned about drug and alco- hol abuse, Molloy said. About 75 percent of responding employers have a drug policy in place, nearly 80 percent favored a unified policy on drug testing in the workplace and 90 percent wanted to be identified as a drug-free work- place, Molloy said of survey results. But few employers do drug testing in the workplace, Molloy said. The most frequent test was a pre-employment screen to weed out drug users, followed by "incident tests" intended to disclose if employees involved in accidents or other incidents at work were impaired by drugs, according to Molloy. "Random drug testing is appar- ently done to a lesser degree," Moiloy said, "and the majority of the employers in the area do no drug testing." Of the employers who test for drugs, "the vast majority have very few positive screens," Moiloy said, noting, however, that one employer tallied 40 positive screens and another associated five accidents directly to positive drug tests. Drug testing is taking hold across the nation, Molloy noted. Almost half the Fortune 500 companies test for drug use, and many smaller companies follow suit, he said. "It is widely known that employ- ees who use drugs are more likely to be involved in on-the-job acci- dents," Molloy said. "This activity not only endangers the individual, but also co-workers, and the public. Costs for on-the-job accidents can include time loss, medical costs, worker compensation claims and lengthy legal battles," Drug testing in the workplace should be job-related, Molloy can- tioned employers. The tests should be intended to provide a safer work- place, eliminate potential high-risk employees, curb absenteeism, decrease accident and injury rates, respond to client and regulatory demands for drug testing and lower employer insurance costs, Molloy said. Molioy himself has seen drug testing all but eliminate accidents at the facilities of one local employer, he said. "We were seeing a high number of work injuries from one 'liberal' Bob Palmquist, assistant to prison warden, gestures at press conference for national anti-drug campaign. employer," Molloy said. "Many of the workers were impaired when they came to our offices for treat- ment." But when the employer began testing in the workplace, MoUoy said, "we saw a dramatic drop in accidents." Employers, however, should be aware of legal issues surrounding drug testing, Molloy warned. "The employer needs to recog- nize that drug testing could expose the company to liability under the areas of discrimination, violation of policy, defamation and improper searches," Molloy said. The Oregon Together! program may provide a resource to help area employers begin testing programs, Molloy said. "Since interest is so high but utilization of the procedures is so low, it is our recommendation that an area-wide workshop he held where experts in the field....can discuss current recommendations regarding....drug testing by employ- ers," Molloy said. "The ultimate that people coming into the area to work know they are entering an area where drug use in the workplace will not be tolerated, in the interest of all concerned." Sheridan city manager Bruce Peet described efforts of Oregon Together! Communities for Drug Free Youth, a drug abuse prevention campaign underway in Sheridan and 35 other Oregon communities, to identify the risk factors present in Sheridan that lead youngsters to use drugs and alcohol. The group, be said, had com- pleted two surveys about drug use in the community and was preparing to formulate a plan of action to combat drug abuse. "Our goal is in the next five years that the Sheridan community will reflect and live by drug-free norms," Peet said. Pcet said that about 40 commun- ity volunteers had participated in discussions about community risk factors and had gathered informa- tion from a variety of sources. Their efforts, he said, will allow the group to "tailor a response best suited to local conditions," Robert Paimquist, executive assistant to the warden, described Oregon Together! as a program based on "recognition that' drug abuse is a complex problem requir- ing coordinated action from all segments of the community." Risk factors identified by the group, Palmquist said, were "summed up as 'implicit/explicit permissiveness' in our community for drug use and abuse." Specific actions recommended by !i/i 1 !: 'Alisa Ray and 11ravi$ Cook, Willamlna fifth graders, hoist anti-drug posters at rally last week. ngslem paraded from school to city hall where they presented scroll to city official& I the program include a workshop for West Valley businesses to provide information about drug policies, employee assistance programs, drug testing and how to spot employees abusing drugs and alcohol. Other recommendations are to provide opportunities for parents to get skills to help their children in the present climate of drug abuse; continue to explore the possibility of hiring a drug and alcohol counse- lor for the West Valley, funded by the cities of Sheridan and Willa- mina and the Willamina and Sheri- dan school districts; support and expand the DARE program in West Valley schools; and to continue to review information collected to develop further action plans to address the identified community risk factors. In Sheridan schools this week, high school students distributed red ribbons and talked to classes at Faulconer and Chapman grade schools Monday and Tuesday. Students in Sheridan schools will wear red today, demonstrating their choice to remain drug free. Nancy Mahi, a member of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, will speak to Sheridan High School students at a 2:15 p.m. assembly Friday in the school gymnasium. A poster contest continues at Chapman Grade School through the week. Golf course near Hwy. 22 out of rough Plans to build two 18-hole golf courses near Perrydale along Hig- hway 22 are out of the rough and back in the fairway. Polk County commissioners last week repeated their support for the $10 million project proposed by Salem businessman Dong Keun Chaey. The project calls for one public and one private golf course on 520 acres, It has been tied-up in state land use appeals for the past year. County commissioners voted 3-0 to approve a conditional use permit, ignoring concerns raised by some area farmers who said the project could pose traffic dangers on rural roads, compete for water, drive up the price of neighboring farmland and impair farming. Commissioner Mike Propes of Sheridan said opponents failed to support their claims. He had sup- ported the project since its incep- tion. Activities in observance of Red Ribbon Week, a national drug awareness campaign that continues through Oct. 27, kicked off Friday at gatherings in Sheridan and Willa- mina. Speakers at a press conference in Sheridan unveiled results of two surveys recently completed regard- ing drug use and perceptions among Sheridan youth and drug testing and attitudes among West Valley busi- nesses (see separate stories), told of efforts among federal Bureau of Prisons staff to raise awareness of drug and alcohol abuse, and detailed progress of the Oregon Together! campaign in Sheridan. In Willamina, approximately 300 Willamina Elementary School stu- dents marched with banners to city hall, where they presented acting mayor Twila Hill with a resolution proclaiming their choice to remain drug free. The resolution carded the signature of each student. Accepting the rolled document on behalf of the city, Hill asked the students, "what do you say when someone wants you to use drugs?" "Just say NO!," the students shouted back. Following a rendition of "Battle Hymn of the Republic," the stu- dents returned to school, where other activities will continue through the week. At a press conference at the prison employee training center, Kevin Nemeth, the prison's well- ness coordinator, announced that prison employees Buc and Kristal Henry, champion powerlifters, will present a video and discuss drug- free living with Chapman Grade School students at a school assem- bly today at 1 p.m. The Henrys live a drug-free life and travel around the world to compete as powerlifters, Nemeth said. "Their message is that you can achieve great things without drugs," he said. The prison will also print and bind into booklets a collection of essays under preparation by sixth, seventh and eighth grade Chapamn students, Nemeth said. Written on the topic "My Choice Drug Free," the bound essays will be distributed to the students and to area businesses by the prison, Nemeth said. Red Ribbon Week is a drug awareness campaign created by the federal government in response to the death of Enrique Camareno, a federal agent murdered in 1985 by drug runners, Nemeth explained. Honorary chairs this year are Presi- dent and Mrs. George Bush, Nemeth said. At the prison, employees will wear red ribbons as a symbol of non-tolerence for drugs and will display banners and other informa- tion about the dangers of drugs and alcohol, Nemeth said. Prison staff, students to take part in special projects Anti-drug events here listed