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Children Report Less Peer Pressure To Try Marijuana; New Pressure To Try Crack, Wine Coolers

NCJ Number
Date Published
5 pages
This report presents fourth graders' responses to a 'Weekly Reader' 1987 survey designed to determine the peer pressure to use various drugs and the children's views of effective steps to prevent drug use among juveniles.
The national survey was distributed to 6 million children in grades 2-12, to which more than 500,000 responded. A random sample of 100,000 was analyzed. The fourth graders reported that kids their age are less likely to be pressured to try marijuana than they were 4 years ago. The percentage of fourth graders reporting that school was where they learned the most about the dangers of drugs more than doubled over the 4 years, from 15 percent to 32 percent. Reported pressure to try beer, wine, or liquor has remained unchanged, with the percentage reporting such pressure increasing steadily by grade. Twenty-four percent of fourth graders reported that kids their age feel pressure to try cocaine or crack, and 34 percent reported pressure to try wine coolers. Fourth graders believed that the most effective approach for preventing kids from trying alcohol and drugs is teaching them the facts about drugs. Constructive activities that provide fun without drugs was also reported to be effective.


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