November 5, 1985

By the President of the United States of America

A Proclamation

Only a decade ago, many people believed that drug abuse was an insurmountable problem. Throughout America, parents, educators, law enforcement officials, and other community leaders are proving that the fight against drugs can be won. Law enforcement and international cooperation are reducing the availability and supply of illegal drugs. Research and experience have given us new insight into the causes and treatment of drug and alcohol abuse. Most important, Americans have changed their attitudes toward both drugs and drug users. Negative attitudes have been replaced with understanding, and drug abuse is seen for what it really is: destructive of life's potential and a tragic waste of health and opportunity.

We have developed a sense of responsibility, collectively and individually. Today, we hold the key to creating a drug-free society: prevention of drug abuse through awareness and education.

Many people have contributed to this improved situation. During the past four years, all segments of American society have worked together to stop drug abuse among our young and have brought about new laws and public policies. Young people everywhere are moving away from drug-taking behavior and embracing positive goals such as excellence in education, physical fitness, and personal integrity.

Parents have banded together, and young people are receiving strong support for behavior that is anti-drug, pro-achievement, and that recognizes individual responsibility. These efforts are creating an environment that nurtures our Nation's greatest asset -- our children.

But while much has been done, we cannot let up on our efforts against illicit drugs and those who would profit from the havoc they wreak.

We must continue to work together to address drug and alcohol problems in our homes and families. We must carry these concerns into our schools, churches, workplaces, and community life. By heightening awareness, we can gather the moral strength to do what is right and channel it into effective measures against this menace.

To encourage widespread participation in efforts directed at preventing drug abuse, the Congress, by House Joint Resolution 126, has designated the week of November 3 through November 9, 1985, as ``National Drug Abuse Education Week'' and authorized and requested the President to issue a proclamation in observance of this occasion.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby proclaim the week of November 3 through November 9, 1985, as National Drug Abuse Education Week. I call upon all Americans to join me in observing this week with personal dedication and a public commitment to protect the future of our Nation by eliminating drug abuse.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this fifth day of November, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-five, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and tenth.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 10:36 a.m., November 6, 1985]

Note: The proclamation was released by the Office of the Press Secretary on November 6.