The Alliance for Safe Kids (ASK) invites the community to take a visible stand against drugs by celebrating Red Ribbon Week from October 23-31.
Red Ribbon Week raises awareness of drug use and the problems related to drugs facing our community, and encourages parents, educators, business owners, and other community organizations to promote drug-free lifestyles.
This year’s celebration will kick off in Yorktown Heights on October 23 with red ribbons hung throughout the town of Yorktown and special messaging throughout the Jefferson Valley Mall.
The red ribbon symbolizes a continuing commitment to reducing the demand for illicit drugs in our communities. In 1985, Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Special Agent Enrique S. “Kiki” Camarena was killed by drug traffickers. Shortly after Camarena’s death, citizens from his hometown of Calexico, California, began wearing red ribbons to remember him and commemorate his sacrifice. Congress established Red Ribbon Week in 1988.
“Red Ribbon Week encourages our entire community to adopt healthy, drug-free lifestyles,” said Liz Talbert, Coalition Coordinator. “The campaign brings together parents, schools, and businesses as we look for innovative ways to keep kids and communities drug free.”
In addition to Red Ribbon Week messages being shared at the Jefferson Valley Mall, ASK is excited to display a “Hidden in Plain Sight” exhibit next to Macy’s on the Second Floor. This will feature items that may be indicative of drug and/or alcohol abuse and is just a preview of a larger exhibit that will be on display at ASK’s 6th Annual Save A Life on April 3, 2016.
Pat Tomassi, Director of the Westchester Coalition for Drug and Alcohol Free Youth added, “We are pleased to partner with the Alliance for Safe Kids to help provide information that empowers parents to protect their children and teens. We will be launching an interactive “web” version of this “Hidden in Plain Sight” initiative that parents can access on our web page. More information will be available soon.”
“Red Ribbon Week gives us the opportunity to be vocal and visible in our efforts to achieve a drug-free community,” said Talbert. “Research shows that children are less likely to use alcohol and other drugs when parents and other role models are clear and consistent in their opposition to substance use and abuse.”