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Zoom conference set on youth risky behavior

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Bismarck-area residents interested in learning how to spot signs of substance use among youth can attend a Zoom conference on Tuesday.

Bismarck-Burleigh Public Health, the Bismarck Police Youth Bureau and Bismarck Public Schools are partnering on the Hidden in Plain Sight initiative at 7 p.m.

Hidden in Plain Sight is an interactive display of a teenager’s bedroom and vehicle containing items signaling that a young person might be involved in risky activities. Parents can learn how to spot warning signs, and how to prevent easy access to alcohol and other drugs, as well as get tips for communicating with teens.

Bismarck consistently ranks at or above the state averages when it comes to teen substance use, according to Public Health. The 2019 ND Youth Risk Behavior Survey indicated that 32% of Bismarck-Mandan High School students had consumed alcohol in the previous 30 days, compared to 28% of students statewide.

Vaping, marijuana and other drugs also are a problem among Bismarck youth, according to Public Health Substance Abuse Prevention Coordinator Sue Kahler.

“Open communication, consistent monitoring and clear boundaries can go a long way in preventing underage drinking and substance use,” she said. “Talking openly and honestly with your children about this topic and your household expectations is one of the most effective ways to prevent substance use in your child.”

The Zoom event can be accessed at https://us02web.zoom.us/j/86819686142?pwd=MUpIWmxNVVExTzY2cEtiMWRCZzNHZz09. The passcode is 345785. For more information, call 701-355-1597.

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