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Risky Business brings good news to local parents

Arrests for teen drug use are significantly lower here than in other Clackamas County cities
by: SUBMITTED PHOTO Kelly Troike of the Pacer Parents Club and State Farm Insurance agent Paul Barton were pleased with the highly successful “Risky Business” event held last week.

When the news is about teenage drug and alcohol use, parents are usually prepared to hear the worst.

But with 'Risky Business,' an event held Nov. 30 at Lakeridge High School, a large audience of parents heard some encouraging words about the situation in Lake Oswego.

'There's good news and not-so-good news,' said Kelly Troike of the Pacer Parents Club, which sponsored the event. 'Marijuana is here in Lake Oswego, and it's easily accessible. But drug dealers do not like to sell in Lake Oswego.'

Officer Kevin Webb of the Lake Oswego Police Department provided some positive statistics for the parents. Arrests for teen drug use are significantly lower here than in other cities in Clackamas County.

'A state survey singled out Clackamas County,' Officer Webb said. 'The crime stats for teenagers are far lower than they are in other places in the county. Parents can be satisfied that their kids are being kept safe.'

'The Lake Oswego School District has a really good relationship with the police department,' Troike said. 'There is consistent counseling and support.'

Troike thinks the support network will get even stronger when schools team up with the Oregon Partnership, a nationally recognized organization that strives to end substance abuse and suicide.

'That is the next step to ensure the well-being of every student,' Troike said.

There is another good reason for parents to seek safe behavior by their children: saving money. Paul Barton, an agent for State Farm Insurance, spoke about how insurance costs are affected by risk strategies that promote safe, responsible driving. Basically, this simply involves being a good parent.

'You would be amazed at the high percentage of kids who listen to what mom and dad have to say,' Barton said. 'Parents can help reinforce good habits and becoming good stewards.'

Parents can help greatly by making sure their teen drivers are properly insured and by taking advantage of safe-driving programs offered by companies like State Farm.

'The bottom line is that parents are responsible,' Troike said. 'Our schools and police are being real diligent. But we still have to parent.'