DUI Programs are Treatment, not School!

25 Jul 2014 Comments
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You have probably heard the term, “DUI School.” DUI Programs in California are not schools, they are treatment programs. A schools primary focus is on education, instilling knowledge. Take for example, traffic school; designed only to educate the participant in traffic regulations.
Sheldon Zhang, Professor of Sociology at San Diego State University, states that schools educate by providing certain types of knowledge, individuals accumulate information that may increase their understanding or insight into certain aspects of human life or societal issues.Such knowledge gain is not required to produce or lead to any specific behavioral changes.While there are expectations what our students should or ought to become in the future, whether they will meet such expectations are typically not the concern of the educators.

Zhang points out four key points that DUI programs are a treatment more than just education.

1. These programs have a clear intention to exert influence over behavioral changes–to bring about changes.

2. Most, if not all, programs are cognitive-behavioral in orientation–focusing on identifying problematic thinking patterns and habits and recognition of risk behaviors or coping mechanisms so that ideal or “proper” response behavior can be formed.

3. Engage in activities (group and individual or peer counseling) that are main stake in mental health treatment community.

4. Clients are sanctioned into the programs for reasons of conduct/behavioral problems (not for lack of knowledge).

Zhang has closely reviewed the Safety Center DUI Program Curriculum and has observed its implementation in San Diego County. He states, “ [Safety Center Curriculum] follows the mainstream Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) approach commonly found in counseling psychology, which emphasizes the recognition and awareness of one’s substance use problems and following specific prescriptions of behavioral modifications that aim at recognizing stress-provoking events and coping skills.”

The Safety Center Curriculum reflects the cumulative clinical experiences and practical knowledge over the decades from its counselors and clinical supervisors. Zhang further states it should be pointed out that the Safety Center curriculum and clinical practices have been consistently applied across all its DUI program sites in three counties (Sacramento, Stanislaus, and Yolo) as well as the PC-1000 program in Stanislaus County to achieve consistency in the intervention approach. The curriculum has also gained wider acceptance by other DUI program providers in California and other states.

For more information about the Safety Center Drug & Alcohol Programs CLICK HERE

7 Tips for Family Bike Safety

17 Jul 2014 Comments
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The arrival of warmer weather and sunnier days means families can escape from indoor activities and head out on adventures beyond the front lawn. The benefits of being an active family are endless and we think bike riding is the perfect activity to get everyone moving. But before you and the kids rush out and start pedaling, there’s an important factor that you need to consider — safety. Here are a few tips to make sure every ride is the safest ride:

1. Protect the noggin – a helmet is the single most effective safety device available to reduce head injury and death from bicycle crashes. Helmet Fit Test.

2. Adjust bicycle to fit – when a child is straddling the bike both feet should be flat on the ground and there should be 1 to 3 inches of space between the child and the top bar.

3. Do the ABC Quick Check – Air, Brakes, Crank & Chain. It’s important to do a bike maintenance check whether it’s been a day or nine months since your last ride.

4. Be Bright, Use Lights – When riding at dusk, dawn or in the evening, be bright and use lights. Also fluorescent, reflective or bright-colored clothes will help kids be visible on the road

5. Road Rules- If you allow your kids to ride on the street, be sure to go over the rules of the road: obey all traffic laws, including stoplights, signs, signals and lane markings, yield to pedestrians, ride your bicycle in the same direction as traffic and signal when you make turns.

6. Choose your path- Avoid hills and find bike routes that will make cycling fun for everyone. With kids, it’s often safer to keep to a bike trail than to head onto busy streets.

7. Making Safety a Family Affair– One of the best ways to help kids learn safe bike riding is to set a good example by following the rules of the road yourself. Go for bike rides with your kids so you can show them what safe riding looks like.

Not ready for an adventure on the road just yet? Then join us at Safetyville for Free Family Bike Night! Kiddos of all shapes, sizes, and abilities are welcome to cruise the 3 1/2 acre miniature city on their two-wheelers, trikes, push bikes, and scooters. Bike Nights are held on Thursday & Fridays from 5:30-8:00pm, with a nightly safety clinic at 6:30. For more information Call (916) 438-3380 or Email Mark.

Teen-to-Teen Safe Driving Campaign

14 Jul 2014 Comments
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The Allstate Foundation and Safety Center expanded its California Teen-to-Teen Safe Driving Campaign contest into the Central Valley and first place winners for 2014 were Escalon, Manteca and Ronald E. McNair high schools. Schools from Stockton to Fresno entered the contest and youth leaders created positive campaigns to strengthen beliefs about teen safe driving behavior as the socially accepted norm. Campaigns include creating a positive message and engaging students in activities to reinforce safe driving decisions. Pre- and post-campaign surveys measured the overall effectiveness of using the power of peer influence to produce positive outcomes.

McNair earned a 2014 Campaign Winner banner by accumulating the most points for student participation and reaching out to parents and the community with their safe driving message. Students started the month-long campaign with a t-shirt/storyboard competition and passing out anti-texting stickers. On social media, youth used Hash tag, #MIND2014 (McNair Informing New Drivers), and posted pictures of campaign activities. Student groups created a texting slogan on the school fence using solo cups and held up signs in a rally attended by Stockton mayor, Anthony Silva, and covered by the Stockton Record. A skit at the Spring Rally, daily video PSA announcements and a pledge activity helped teens deliver positive messages related to distracted driving. An email to parents and guardians described the event and reinforced the importance of safe driving behavior. Prior to the campaign, 67% of students surveyed admitted to driving distracted and in a post-campaign survey, 6% said they still engaged in this unsafe behavior and they pledged change.

This campaign was a success because students at McNair were empowered to create positive peer-to-peer teen safe messages and they produced significant results. Youth have a powerful voice and they can be effective as advocates for values that support traffic safety in their schools, their families and in the community.

For more information about the Teen Safe Driving Programs CLICK HERE