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Broome County school districts show lower drug usage

BINGHAMTON (WBNG) — Broome County’s biennial survey shows that students are using drugs at a lower rate than surveys in the past have shown.

The Prevention Needs Assessment Survey asked students from 9 out of 12 Broome County school districts about substance use, social interactions, and the prevalence of violence. In 2018, the survey found that the top three drugs students are using are alcohol, tobacco products, and marijuana.

“Our substance use overall in Broome County has decreased, which is exactly what prevention wants to happen, which is wonderful,” said Maria Fabrizi, coordinator for Drug Free Communities.

The data is helping others with prevention methods.

“We are here to educate the students, we are here to educate the parents, we are here to educate school officials, and our state wide and local elected officials, and what they can do to protect, especially the increase in e-cigarette use among youth,” said Public Health Educator, Laura Kelly.

The survey also analyzed the age in which students begin to use drugs. The national average is 13 years old, where Broome County’s is slightly older at 13 and a half years old.

Overall, officials say Broome County is taking steps in the right direction.

“I think Broome County is doing a great job. I think there are a lot of prevention efforts in place, and the results really show that,” said Fabrizi.

Katie Jones

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