An effective news release on a nationwide event and grassroots campign. The whole annual observance even has a catchy theme “Ask me, See me, Be me, Heroes Remain Drug Free”
Drug Free Campaign Press Release by the US Department of Defense
“Ask me, See me, Be me, Heroes Remain Drug Free,” is the Department of Defense’s theme for its 18th annual observance of Red Ribbon Week 2008, which is planned to run from Oct. 23 to 31. The campaign will recognize and encourage Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine and National Guard programs across the country that have made an impact on their communities to combat drug, alcohol and tobacco use.
Red Ribbon Week – now in its 20th year of national observance – was launched in 1988 by the National Family Partnership as a grassroots campaign to encourage kids and communities to stay drug free and to uphold a standard for Americans everywhere. The movement was inaugurated after the tragic death of Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena, who was kidnapped, tortured and killed by Mexican drug traffickers after successfully disrupting a major narcotics operation.
To celebrate the DoD’s involvement in keeping service members and civilians drug-free, the Pentagon will host an awards ceremony on Friday, Oct. 24, when Mrs. Geneva Camarena, mother of fallen DEA agent Enrique Camarena, and the Honorable Michele M. Leonhart, acting administrator of the DEA, will speak.
The official ceremony, held in the Pentagon Auditorium, will be hosted by Deputy Secretary of Defense Gordon England, who will recognize the most successful DoD outreach, education and awareness programs as he hands out the 18th Annual Secretary of Defense Community Drug Awareness Awards. Along with giving accolades to the top drug reduction programs in each service, England will present the Fulcrum Shield Award to a Young Marines unit from Douglas County, Colo., for its outstanding efforts in promoting a drug-free lifestyle.
The Honorable John P. Walters, director of the White House Office of National Drug Policy, also plans to give an address at the ceremony, and shared his excitement about making a national impact with agencies like the DoD.
“Thanks in large measure to the efforts of the men and women of the DoD; the DEA; federal, state, and local agencies; and countless others at the community level, youth drug use has fallen by nearly a quarter over the last six years,” Walters said. “Red Ribbon Week is an appropriate time for all of us to honor the sacrifices made in pursuit of this important progress, and for the nation to rededicate itself to making further progress against the harms of drug use and addiction.”