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 At home and at events


Unmonitored alcohol, including alcohol stored in a cabinet, basement or garage, can be a temptation. Lock it up.

  • Exercise your influence. Data shows that 95% of Jefferson County youth continue to care what their parents think, even while they are in high school and college. Let your teen know that you don’t want them to drink and that 82% of Jefferson County youth haven't used alcohol in the past month.

Talk to your kids and role play how to say no to a drink:

  • No thanks.

  • I don't feel like it. Do you have any soda?

  • Alcohol's not my thing.

  • Forget it.

  • You're pressuring me. I said no.

  • Back off with the alcohol thing.


In our community

  • A parent announces she is hosting a teen party, but you shouldn't worry — she's taking the car keys from every kid who comes in. Or someone you know says he's serving alcohol to his high school son's friends so they can “learn to drink responsibly.”

  • Speak out, share the science-based information you've learned on this website or from NIDA.

  • If you hear about a situation, say that you don’t want other people serving alcohol to your teen or condoning teen drinking in front of your teen. Let your friends, neighbors, and family members know that the minimum drinking age is a policy that protects teens and that you don’t want your teen to drink.

  • Take action before a situation arises. Start talking to the parents of your teen's friends early — for example, when your kid is in 6th grade. Tell them about the risks of teen drinking and let them know that you don’t want anyone to allow your teen to drink alcohol.

  • Talk to adults who host teen parties. Let them know that the overwhelming majority of parents support the legal drinking age and agree that it is not okay to serve alcohol to someone else's teen — and not okay to turn a blind eye to teens' alcohol use.

  • Talk to your school board, school principals, teachers, and coaches. Let them know that alcohol use is not a "rite of passage."

  • Let local law enforcement know that you encourage active policing of noisy teen parties that may signal alcohol use. 


Medication safety

Safeguarding prescription and over-the-counter medication properly improves the health and safety of your family and others who come into your home.

If you have prescription medicine in your home, here are some safe storage tips:


Tips for safe storage



  • Ask your community pharmacist if any of the medicine you have been prescribed may have the potential for abuse.

  • Lock up medications that have the potential for abuse in a cabinet, drawer, or medicine safe.

  • Keep medication in a cool, dry place that is out of the reach of children.

  • Store medication in its original container — the label on the bottle provides important information about the medicine.

  • Keep an updated list of all prescription medications in your home. Take an inventory at least twice a year — when clocks ‘spring’ forward in the spring and ‘fall’ back in autumn, for example. 

  • Talk to your pharmacist about how to properly dispose of unused or unwanted medication. 

  • Don't leave medication in places that are easily visible to youth, children or visitors, or that are accessible to children or pets.

  • Don't store medication in a bathroom medicine cabinet where humidity and temperature changes can cause damage.

  • Don't share prescription medication. Healthcare professionals prescribe specific medication for individuals based on personal medical histories and other health factors. A medication that works for one person may harm or kill someone else, even if symptoms are similar.

  • Don't take medication in front of children who often mimic adults.


Medication disposal


You can talk to your pharmacist about how to properly dispose of unused or unwanted medicine. Medications can be also disposed, free of charge, at the following places:


Culver City Hall 

200 First Street

Culver, OR 97734

541- 546-6494


Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office

675 Cherry Lane

Madras, OR 97741

541-475-6520 541-546-6494


Crooked River Ranch Fire & Rescue

6971 SW Shad Road 

Terrebonne, OR 97760

(541) 923-6776


Firearm safety


Lots of people have guns at home. During a suicide risk crisis, what some families do is store guns away from home until the person is feeling better, or lock them in a secure gun safe and give the key to a trusted adult.  


For a person at risk of suicide, firearm safety is vital to suicide prevention. It is based on the following understandings:

  • From 2010-2014, 2,280 Oregon residents died from
    firearm injuries.

  • The majority of firearm
     in Oregon were suicide loss (1,897 deaths).

  • Many suicide attempts occur with little planning during a short-term crisis.

  • 90% of people who attempt suicide who survive do NOT go on to die by suicide later.

  • Numerous studies indicate that youth know where firearms are stored, even if we don’t think they do.

  • Youth surveys have demonstrated that even if firearms are locked, youth know where keys and ammunition are kept. 

  • Youth are more likely to act upon impulse behavior.​

  • Firearms used in youth suicide usually belong to a parent.


  • Keeping safe doses on hand also reduces risk. A doctor, pharmacist, or the Poison Control Center (1-800-222-1222) may be able to help determine safe quantities for the medications to keep on hand. 



  • Alcohol can both increase the chance that a person makes an unwise choice, like attempting suicide, and increase the lethality of a drug overdose. Keep only small quantities at home.


Lock it up


Researchers from the University of Colorado Anschutz Medical Campus, in Aurora, wanted to see if unintentional marijuana exposures in children increased after the drug became legal for adult recreational use in 2014. A study found: 


  • a 92% increase in marijuana-related visits to the children's hospital and 

  • an average 34 percent increase in poison center cases per year -- significantly higher than the average 19 percent increase in the rest of the United States.


When we talk about "safeguarding," we also mean safeguarding our youths' belief systems from marijuana harm. We can begin by exercising our influence as parents. Data shows that 95% of Jefferson County youth continue to care what their parents think, even while they are in high school and college.


Let your teen know that you don’t want them to use marijuana and that 91% of youth have not used marijuana in the past month.


  • Talk to your kids and role play how to say no to marijuana:

  • No, I already eat too much junk food.

  • No, grass is for mowing.

  • No, weed's for whacking.

  • No thanks, I already feel paranoid--THC makes it worse.

  • You think I'm going to put my brain at risk for a weed?


Here are some safeguarding ideas:


  • Possess as little marijuana as you can if you live in a home with youth.

  • Keep all marijuana out of plain sight, stored with other medications in a locked box. 

  • Never drive with youth in the car after using marijuana, and talk to them about how to avoid getting into a vehicle with someone who has.

  • Try to have one parent or adult present at all times who has not used marijuana.

  • Use discretion when medicating, and do not do so when youth are present. Consider medicating after youth are asleep or when you will not interact with him or her for several hours.

  • If your youth is old enough to understand, specifically explain to him or her that the marijuana is medication, prescribed by a doctor, and can be dangerous to youth, just like other prescription medication.



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