You have been working at the Wayne County probation office for approximately 6 months now. Your supervisor has given you your 6-month employment evaluation, which was excellent. As a result, your supervisor has informed you that he is to choose one of the probation officers on his staff of 45 to be appointed to a committee on alcohol use and abuse. This committee is being put together by the County Board of Supervisors. Your supervisor asks you to be part of this committee, which you excitedly agree to do.
At your first committee meeting, the committee chair divides the 30 individuals into smaller subcommittees to explore specific areas of alcohol use and abuse. You are assigned to the prevention and treatment committee along with eight other individuals. The committee is made up professionals from various disciplines, including probation, parole, corrections, addiction, substance/alcohol abuse, social work, psychology, psychiatry, and pharmacology. The board of supervisors has asked that your committee focus solely on prevention issues relating to minors (not adults).
- Universal programs: are designed to address risk and use the protective factors that are common for all children in any given setting, i.e. school or community
- Selective programs: this program targets groups of children as well as teens who have the risk factors of potential drug use
- Indicated programs: this program is designed for youth who have already begun the path of using drugs (NIH, 2014)
- Which prevention strategy do you personally believe would be most effective, and why?
- Which prevention strategy do you believe would be the least effective, and why?
- Which prevention strategy would you recommend for the preteen population (defined as children ages 10–12)
- Do you believe that the strategy that you identified as the most effective is cost-effective? Support your position with facts.
- As a subcommittee member, rank the 3 prevention strategies in order of the most valuable to the least valuable, and explain your position.
Preventing Alcohol Abuse Among Minors: The Best Strategy
Notably, drug abuse among the youth has seen tremendous increase in the recent past. The early use of drugs proliferate the chances of addiction to a person. Prevention is the key to eliminating drug abuse and thereafter tackling the problem of addiction. Conferring to the sentiments, in my opinion, I believe the universal programs are the most effective prevention strategy to solve the menace. Contextually, the universal programs are designed with consideration of the prevailing environment the minors are exposed. The program allows for detection and identification of the predisposing factors prior to actual damage. Remarkably, the causative factors of drug abuse in minors are socially borne. By preventing early use of drugs or alcohol the community will make impressive steps in reducing drug abuse risks. In the circumstantial event of preventing young persons’ from drugs experimentation, it is very possible to do away with drug addiction menace.
Among the prevention strategies, selective program is the least effective for me due to its confined nature. Despite the vulnerability of the teens and children exposed to risk factors, the approach neglects the bigger picture of the larger society. The problem of drug abuse calls for a holistic approach in dealing with situation something the program overlooks. Selective programs usually fail to willingly engage some youth and families at risk.
In the case of handling the preteens on the issue of drug abuse I would recommend the selective strategy as the most appropriate. This is because they are the target group and there is room for improvement and concentration to the individuals creates a connection with the facilitators and participants in sharing experiences.
Universal programs are cost-effective I believe. The whole populace of a society is included and engaged in the program to help in preventing and curbing drug abuse among the minors.
In the three prevention strategies universal programs are the most effective in my opinion as they are holistic, though perceptibly considered over-inclusive. I appreciate the fact that the risk factors are collectively identified in prior to allow the initiation of the apt corrective measures. Selective programs come as a second for me in that it has a limited scope on addressing only the target group. Lastly, the indicated programs dwell on healing rather than prevention. Recognizing that prevention is the key to drug addiction is imperative.
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