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Survey: Teens Are Going To Pot:

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Boston teenagers are more likely to light up a joint than a Marlboro, a
report released yesterday by the City of Boston found.

Just 15 percent of Boston high school students told school officials they
smoked cigarettes, but 22 percent of the students said they used marijuana,
according The Boston 2003 Trend Report: Snapshot of Boston's Children and
Youth.

Pot smoking has held steady since 1993, the first year included in the study.

But cigarette smoking shows a steady decline: from 21 percent of teens in
1993 to 15 percent in 2001, the most recent year surveyed.

Still, alcohol remains the drug of choice among Boston's youth.

In 2001, 42 percent told public school officials they'd had a drink in the
past 30 days. Nearly half of those students, 18 percent, reported binge
drinking in the past two weeks.

Meanwhile, 30 percent of Boston high school students said they'd had their
first drink before they turned 13.

The relatively high rates of drinking and drug use put Boston teens at risk
for other problems, including strained relationships with their parents,
unprotected sex and alcoholism in adulthood, the report found.

The trend report compiled dozens of statistics from a host of sources to
create a picture of city life for Boston's children.

The goal is to "help the city and its partners to make sound decisions
about program development, service delivery and allocation of resources as
we map out the future for Boston's young people," Mayor Thomas M. Menino said.

Other findings include:

Twenty-six percent of Boston's children lived in poverty in 2000, a slight
drop since 1990.

Boston children are a third more likely to live in poverty than than adults
in the city.

Half of all teenagers say their parents don't ask them where they're going.

Twenty-five percent of Boston teenagers feel they are not getting enough sleep.


Pubdate: Sat, 06 Dec 2003
Source: Boston Herald (MA)
Copyright: 2003 The Boston Herald, Inc
Contact: letterstoeditor@bostonherald.com
Website: http://www.bostonherald.com/news.html
 
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