The research is in, mass media scare campaigns don't work and can actually increase drug use.

"With ongoing concern about the use of "ice" (methamphetamine) there are increasing calls for mass media scare campaigns, which have proven to be ineffective and in some cases appear to actually increase intentions to use drugs.  Perhaps the best known of these failures is the "Montana Meth Project " which developed a series of frightening television and print ads that have been used across the United States.  A review of this campaign titled "Drugs, Money and Graphic Ads: A critical review of the Montana Meth Project" found that the campaign resulted in increases in the acceptability of using methamphetamine and decreases in the perceived danger of using drugs.  A further evaluation of this campaign published in 2010 titled "Does information matter? The effect of the Meth Project on meth use among youths" found that the campaign failed to have any impact on rates of methamphetamine use amongst young people.  Since the publication of this further negative review, the campaign has spread to more US states."

This article has been republished with kind permission from Dovetail QLD . They will be running a webinar on methamphetamine on Tuesday 5th of May.   It's not just the US government that is guilty of this approach. Check out our own home grown attempt here. Follow the links to read more about why scare tactics don't work and the alternatives to scaring young people into not using.

Which campaigns do you think are worthy of a YoDAA health Warning? Send us your links  

Which campaigns do you think are worthy of a YoDAA health Warning?