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SAPCA Members, 
I hope to see you at our quarterly meeting THIS Thursday, March 27, 7 - 8:30 p.m. at Charles Houston Recreation Center, 905 Wythe St.
We will briefly discuss the impact of marijuana legalization and then spend the bulk of our time discussing the community assessment.




* SAPCA Attends Annual CADCA Conference
* Above the Influence Members Present wreckED to Francis Hammond 7th Graders
* SAPCA Chair, Allen Lomax Accepts Lewis Hine Award for Service to Children and Youth
* SAPCA Quarterly Meeting (3/27)
* Promoting Positive Behaviors, Preventing Risky Behaviors at FACE Center Events
* Art Uniting People (5/7)
* Marijuana-Infused Snacks Alarm Parents, Schools and Some Doctors
* Follow the Example of CVS and Quit Selling Tobacco: Senators to Other Drug Chains
* Marijuana Legalization Expected to Lead to More Teen Use: Survey
* New Products Similar to E-Cigarettes are Attracting Teens


SAPCA Members Attend Annual CADCA Conference
from l-r: Yahya Yaziji, Tonia Copeland, Nancy Martinez, Allen Lomax, Emma West, Noraine Buttar, Teresa Tidwell and Shelly Morgan


SAPCA Board Members, Allen Lomax, Shelly Morgan, Tonia Copeland, Teresa Tidwell, and youth members, Emma West, Yahya Yaziji and Nancy Martinez joined 2500 community and state leaders in learning new strategies to prevent drug abuse at the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America Leadership Forum during the first week of February.
The 2014 conference's theme, The Power of the Movement, reiterated the fact that years of thoughtful evidence-based strategic planning can ultimately change beliefs, behaviors and community norms. Also, effective prevention requires participation of an entire community, knowledge of its demographics and norms and formation of strategic alliances.


Above the Influence Members Present wreckED to Francis Hammond 7th Graders

Above the Influence (ATI) Club Members and TC Juniors, Mariel Aguilar and Andrea Melara presented wreckED to 7th grade Health Classes at TC Williams on February 12. The Partnership at's wreckED is a program that challenges teens to think more about their own and their friends' behavior regarding alcohol and other drugs, and to consider the consequences of getting involved. The program focuses on alcohol, marijuana and prescription drugs.


If you work with youth and would like to host a wreckED presentation, contact Noraine at


SAPCA Chair, Allen Lomax Accepts Lewis Hine Award For Service to Children and Youth



The National Child Labor Committee awarded Allen with one of the prestigious Lewis Hine Awards for Service to Children and Youth at a ceremony on February 18 in New York City.  Allen has been selected as one of ten recipients for the awards, which honor professionals or volunteers for unheralded and exceptional service to young people. For two decades, Allen has advocated for youth in Alexandria. He has volunteered countless hours of his time to SAPCA. Allen's wife, Margee Lomax, SAPCA Vice-Chair, Shelly Morgan and SAPCA Coordinator, Noraine attended the award ceremony.


Read more in the news release and USA Today feature.



SAPCA Quarterly Meeting (3/27)

Thursday, March 27, 7 - 8:30 p.m. at Charles Houston Recreation Center, 905 Wythe St.





Promoting Positive Behaviors, Preventing Risky Behaviors Presentations at FACE Center Events


SAPCA, the Alexandria Campaign on Adolescent Pregnancy and the Alexandria Gang Prevention Community Task Force will present "It's Never Too Early and Never Too Late to Talk to Your Kids" at Family and Community Engagement Centers on April 3rd, 7th and 8th.





Thursday, April 3rd, 2014


Community Lodgings
607 Notabene Dr. Apt 1

Monday, April 7th 2014



300 Wythe St.

Ladrey High Rise

Tuesday, April 8th 2014


Brent Place

375 South Reynolds St


Register online or by calling 703.824.6865.



Art Uniting People Exhibition (5/7)


The opening reception for the fourth annual "Art Uniting People" exhibition will be 5-8 p.m. at Convergence (1801 N. Quaker Lane). A second reception will be held in October at the Beatley Library. The exhibition is open to all artists whose lives have been affected by mental illness, addiction or intellectual disabilities. The deadline for artwork and entry forms is April 11. Email for additional information.




Parents, schools and some doctors are voicing concern about children's access to marijuana-laced snacks, which are becoming increasingly popular in states where recreational or medical marijuana is legal.


In Colorado, where recreational marijuana for adults ages 21 and older is now legal, marijuana-laced snacks are becoming a booming business, according to The New York Times. Products include chocolate-peppermint Mile High Bars and peanut butter candies infused with hash oil, the article notes.


Retailers say the products are popular with customers who want to experience the effects of marijuana without smoking and coughing. Critics say the snacks are ending up in the hands of teens who want to get high discreetly, or children who don't know they contain marijuana. They note products can contain large concentrations of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana.


Colorado has ordered stores to sell marijuana-infused snacks with child-resistant packaging, and has banned labels designed to appeal to children.


Eight U.S. senators are urging other major drug store chains to follow the example of CVS, which announced last week it will no longer sell tobacco products by October.


CVS, the nation's second-largest drugstore chain, will be the first national pharmacy company to stop selling tobacco. The company has more than 7,600 retail stores. Public health advocates have pressured retailers for years to stop selling cigarettes and other tobacco products. CVS says its annual sales of tobacco products total about $2 billion, or about 1.6 percent of the company's revenues in 2012.


The senators, all Democrats, called on Walgreen Co., the nation's largest drugstore chain, and Rite Aid Corp., the third largest, to stop selling tobacco. In a letter sent to both chains, as well as to the National Association of Chain Drug Stores, the senators wrote, "By reducing the availability of cigarettes and other tobacco products and increasing access to tobacco cessation products, [you have] the power to further foster the health and wellness of customers and send a critical message to all Americans-and especially children-about the dangers of tobacco us."

A survey of high school seniors suggests marijuana legalization will lead to increased use of the drug among teens. The survey found 10 percent of seniors who said they don't currently use marijuana said they would try it if the drug were legal.


Researchers at New York University's Center for Drug Use and HIV Research surveyed almost 10,000 high school seniors about their attitudes toward marijuana, UPI reports. The findings appear in the International Journal of Drug Policy.


"What I personally find interesting is the reasonably high percentage of students who are very religious, non-cigarette smokers, non-drinkers, and those who have friends who disapprove of marijuana use - who said they intended to try marijuana if it was legal," lead researcher Dr. Joseph J. Palamar said in a news release. "This suggests that many people may be solely avoiding use because it is illegal, not because it is 'bad' for you, or 'wrong' to use."


A growing number of teens are starting to use devices that are similar to e-cigarettes, with names such as "hookah pens," "e-hookahs" or "vape pens." The devices are being marketed to avoid the stigma associated with smoking any kind of cigarette, The New York Times reports. The new devices are colorful and come in candy flavors, but are otherwise almost identical to e-cigarettes. Like e-cigarettes, they have nicotine and other chemicals, which are unregulated.


Health officials say surveys about e-cigarette use generally don't ask about these other products, so they may be greatly underestimating how many people are using e-cigarettes and similar devices. They say teens appear to view e-cigarettes and e-hookahs as being different products, even though they are basically the same. Many young people say they are not interested in using e-cigarettes, but have tried hookah pens, vape pens or e-hookahs.


Critics of e-cigarettes say secondhand vapor is a pollutant, and e-cigarettes can get more people addicted to nicotine. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will soon propose rules on regulating e-cigarettes. The FDA is expected to consider e-cigarettes as tobacco products, which will allow the agency to provide the same federal oversight that applies to cigarettes, chewing tobacco, cigarette tobacco, and roll-your-own tobacco. E-cigarettes could be subjected to the same requirements for disclosure of ingredients, manufacturing quality and restrictions on sales to minors that apply to regular cigarettes.



Noraine Buttar, MPH
421 King St
Alexandria, VA 22314
703.746.3670 (office)
703.887.8812 (mobile)