Cease and Desist: Dubs Pledge to Stay Drug Free Another Year


Drug Denial: Both junior Akil Wharry and senior Braydon Kercado understand the importance of staying drug-free and how it has been clearly emphasized to all Warriors.

As October comes to a close, North Atlanta High School has been one of many schools spreading the importance of drug free awareness. With a school that places heavy emphasis on responsibility in their young adults, it is significant that time is given to educate Dubs about drugs and their effects. Through this, the annual nationwide Red Ribbon Week is taken seriously at both North Atlanta and other schools throughout APS. 

  Red Ribbon Week is an annual designed awareness campaign that relays information to the nation about the many hazards of drug use. Red Ribbon Week is often portrayed to a younger audience at elementary, middle, and high schools and is even mandatory in many school districts. The message is communicated through activities, pledges, and more. This year’s Red Ribbon Campaign Theme is ‘Drug Free Looks Like Me.’ The official design consists of an invisible figure wearing sunglasses and headphones giving a big thumbs up with the theme around it. Marin Wurst, a 7th grader from Solon Middle School in Ohio, is responsible for this year’s eye-catching design. “I’ve been in APS since the 4th grade at Sarah Smith Elementary. Every year we’ve participated in Red Ribbon Week in October and done different things pertaining to being drug free,” says senior Carl Alexander.

This week is especially important for students living and going to school in Georgia’s capital. Atlanta – as well as the rest of Georgia – has been attempting to bounce back from last year’s opioid crisis that started years back. Dating back to 2015, nearly 7 million opioids were prescribed to Georgia citizens in that year. By 2020, over 1,000 residents had passed away from drug overdoses involving opioids. Both opioids and drugs of harder nature are one of the leading causes of death for Georgians under the age of 50. The high rates of drug abuse among younger populations in Georgia are all the more reason to emphasize the seriousness of being drug free. “It’s known that we want our teenagers to stay away from drugs, but it’s even more important that us as adults express the importance of being drug free,” says Coach Carmen.

This past week, drug free representatives (a few staff members) set up a table outside of the cafeteria. The table consisted of red decorations, resources on drug awareness, and gift bags. Gift bags included a decorative red cup, candy, a mask adorned with the 2021 RRW theme, and more. It’s hoped that students will have the greater takeaway of staying astray of drugs rather than just getting a new mask and cup. This exact takeaway should be imprinted in the heads of all Dubs as North Atlanta strives to keep a drug free community in both the present and future.