To help prevent youth drug use before it starts, Gov. Kasich launched Start Talking! in January 2014. Start Talking! is Ohio's statewide youth drug prevention initiative that brings together proven prevention strategies to promote the importance of having drug-free conversations with our youth. Research shows that children whose parents or other trusted adults talk with them about the risks of drugs are up to 50 percent less likely to use drugs. Start Talking! features three components designed to provide parents, teachers, guardians and community leaders with simple tools to get the conversation started: Know!, Parents360-Rx, and 5 Minutes for Life. Visit the Start Talking! website at starttalking.ohio.gov for details.
- 2013-14: More than 16,500 high school student-athletes participate in 5 Minutes for Life sessions held before or after practice, during which Ohio state troopers, local law enforcement officers and National Guard members talk about responsible decision-making, leadership and encouraging their peers to live a drug-free lifestyle.
- 2014: An additional 6,400 parents, teachers and employers sign up for Know! tips and TEACHable Moments with a total reach of more than 40,000 as a result of organizations sharing the information. They join a subscriber base of more than 60,000.
- 2014-15: More than 17,700 student-athletes participate in Minutes for Life sessions held before or after practices.
- 2014-2015: Start Talking! awards 22 grants totaling $1.5 million to communities to help strengthen school- based prevention and resiliency programming for at-risk youth.
- 2014: An overview of Start Talking! was presented to approximately 500 nurses at three ODH Regional School Nurse Conferences.
- 2014: Gov. Kasich signs HB 367 into law, requiring school districts to provide education about prescription medication and opiate abuse.
- The Ohio Department of Health releases results of the Ohio Youth Risk Behavior Survey which indicates a 50 percent decrease in the number of Ohio teens who used a prescription painkiller without a doctor's prescription.
- 2015: The 5 Minutes for Life program is expanded and now available year round.
- 2015: Start Talking! is displayed at ODH's annual New School Nurse Orientation.