It seems like everywhere we look, news of drug-related deaths, arrests and trafficking are making headlines. It’s not news that drugs are a problem, but it’s about time we all come together to do something about it. Today kicks off Red Ribbon Week and is the country’s oldest and largest anti-drug program. It runs during the last week of October each year, and in addition to educating the community and hosting anti-drug events, it also honors DEA Special Agent Enrique “Kiki” Camarena.
In 1985, Special Agent Enrique Camarena was working in Mexico hot on the trail of a major drug trafficking organization. In an unfortunate turn of events, he was kidnapped, brutally tortured and murdered by the drug cartel. This tragedy exposed the horrors of drugs and the international drug trade to the American public.
Each year, it’s estimated that 80 million Americans take part in Red Ribbon Week to show their support. Red Ribbon Week was first recognized nationally with President Ronald and First Lady Nancy Reagan serving as the first Honorary Chairs, says the Red Ribbon Coalition. Since then, religious organizations, schools, businesses and other organizations have joined together each October during Red Ribbon Week to sponsor contests, organize rallies, races, parades and other community events all focused on promoting a drug-free lifestyle.
The Red Ribbon Week theme is “I am drug-free,” so take a stand and show your personal commitment to a drug-free community by donning a red ribbon. Read more here on the National Family Partnership website.