Study Finds NJ Parents Recognize their Role in Drug-Prevention


August 11, 2010
Contact Information:

Angelo Valente, Executive Director
Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey
Phone: 973-467-2100 x22
Cell: 201-919-1136

Angela Conover, Director of Media and Community Relations
Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey
Cell: 201-916-1030


Study Finds NJ Parents Recognize their Role in Drug-Prevention

 Prescription Drug-Abuse Prevention Awareness is Up Among NJ Parents


Please view the 2010 Parent Tracking Study


(TRENTON) - The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey's (PDFNJ) Center for Prevention Research (CPR), released today, the results of its 2010 Tracking Survey of Parent's Attitudes & Behaviors Toward Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention which once again found that the more frequently a family has a meal together the more parents feel that their opinions have an influence in their child's decision on whether to use drugs or alcohol. The study also found that parents continue to see prescription drug abuse as a serious threat in New Jersey.

"The role of parents in their child's decision to use and abuse drugs is once again confirmed through this recent research," explained, Joseph A. Miele, chairman of PDFNJ. "The 2010 Tracking Survey of Parents' Attitudes & Behaviors Toward Drug and Alcohol Abuse Prevention shows that New Jersey parents, by the simple act of eating a meal with their child, are creating an environment for their children to feel comfortable about approaching them with discussions about drugs and alcohol."

According to Miele the study found parents who frequently have meals with their child (5 or more times a week) are more likely than those who eat together as a family less often to feel that they have "a lot" of influence on their child's attitude towards alcohol (91% versus 84%), and toward drugs (94% versus 89%).

In 2010 more parents feel that their opinions are very important when it comes to their child's decision whether or not to use drugs. Since 2009 more parents are likely to feel their opinion is very important (84% vs. 79%, 2009). "This finding points to the fact that New Jersey parents are becoming increasingly more aware of their role in influencing their child's behavior," noted PDFNJ Executive Director Angelo M. Valente. He explained that the study found that three-quarters of parents think that a major reason kids use drugs is because they think that being high feels good (77%). Seven in ten parents think kids use drugs to help them forget their troubles (70%).

Valente further explained that the study found that more parents think kids are getting drugs from their peers than from drug dealers. More than four in ten parents think that children are getting drugs from their classmates (43%) and one-third think they are getting them from friends (33%), while fewer than one in five cite dealers (16%).

New Jersey parents are realizing the growing dangers of prescription drug abuse, Valente explained. He noted that two-thirds of parents (67%) feel that kids get prescription and over-the-counter drugs from their own home medicine cabinet, and that more than four in ten parents (41%) say they have taken steps to secure their home medicine cabinet. Valente added that over 51% of New Jersey parents said they would be interested in a program to help dispose of unused, unwanted, and expired medicine during a local disposal day such as the upcoming American Medicine Chest Challenge ( on November 13, 2010.

The Center for Prevention Research is a division of PDFNJ. CPR commissions annual research projects conducted by firms and researchers, provides grant support to New Jersey scholars researching all substance abuse related issues, and acts as a central depository of information for all members of the New Jersey prevention community, government officials and the media to utilize. CPR works in cooperation with the Governor's Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse and the New Jersey Department of Human Services.

PDFNJ's Center for Prevention Research commissioned GfK Roper Public Affairs & Media, a leader in public affairs research for over three quarters of a century, to conduct a study to examine the attitudes of New Jersey parents pertaining to drug prevention. The PDFNJ Survey of Parents' Attitudes & Behaviors toward Drug Prevention, an annual survey currently in its fifth year, polled a sample of over 502 parents with children ages 12 to 15. The sample was randomly drawn from a listed sample and conducted between January 21- February 4, 2010. Data were weighted to New Jersey census data for key demographics of households with children ages 12-15. The margin of error at the 95% confidence level is +/- 5 percentage points for the total sample.

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Best known for its statewide anti-drug advertising campaign, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is a private not-for-profit coalition of professionals from the communications, corporate and government communities whose collective mission is to reduce demand for illicit drugs in New Jersey through media communication. To date, more than $54 million in broadcast time and print space has been donated to the Partnership’s New Jersey campaign, making it the largest public service advertising campaign in New Jersey’s history. Since its inception the Partnership has garnered over 90 Advertising and Public Relations Awards from National, Regional & Statewide Media Organizations.