The Message
The D.A.R.E. programs offer useful information and skill to help you to make the right decisions when confronted with peer pressure to use drugs, commit violent acts or to become involved with gangs. The D.A.R.E. officers have seventeen hours in the fifth grade and ten hours in the seventh grade to try to effect each child's life. Given 27 hours over two years to get it right the first time. D.A.R.E. helps, but without the support of the schools, teachers, parents, and community, how can any one program hope to make a positive change your future. Each year, drug abuse kills approximately 14,000 Americans and cost taxpayers nearly $246 billion. In some communities there is great deal pressure on police officials to put more officers on the street, reduced budgets, creating cutback or eliminating programs such as D.A.R.E.

A 1998 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse found that drug use among teenagers has remained stable for two years in row, and even decreased in some cases U.S. government reports have confirmed the first real slowdown in illicit drug use. That illicit drug use among eighth and 10th graders has decreased, and for first time since 1991 there is a increase in the perceived risk of using marijuana among teenagers.

Research has shown that for every $1 spent on drug abuse prevention programs such as D.A.R.E., communities can save $5 in the cost of drug abuse treatment and counseling. We are not alone in this problem, realizing that children are our most precious resource, countries around the world are turning to the D.A.R.E. program to help them fight drug abuse and violence. We would like to invite the Mayor, (who has attended several D.A.R.E. graduations), commissioners and City Manager, to be a part of our D.A.R.E. Culmination program at South Miami Elementary School in early April.

South Miami Police was the first agency to graduate a D.A.R.E. class in Miami-Dade County. We have five certified D.A.R.E. instructors in the Police Department. We teach at Ludlam David Fairchild and South Miami Elementary Schools and South Miami Middle School.