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September 19, 2006

Rafael Lemaitre: (202) 395–6618
cell: (202) 368–8424

White House Anti-Drug Office Begins Posting Videos on YouTube

Cabinet Agency Starts Using Popular Web Site to Reach More Americans Online; Launches New Outreach Strategy to Tap Into Potential of New Media Revolution

(Washington, D.C.)—Today, the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy (ONDCP) became the first U.S. government Cabinet agency to use YouTube, one of the fastest-growing Web sites on the Internet, to provide video content to Internet users worldwide. Beginning today, ONDCP will start posting videos of award-winning anti-drug advertising, national drug policy announcements, and other exclusive content on YouTube.com. This ground-breaking effort will enable ONDCP to reach more Americans online and illustrates how public institutions can adapt to meet the rapidly changing nature of today's communications field.

YouTube is a free video hosting Web site that allows users to upload, view, and share video clips. YouTube currently makes available more than 70 million videos a day to users of their Web site and also allows users to "embed" these video clips on personal blogs and Web sites. The use of this video sharing technology will allow ONDCP to expand its ability to share accurate drug information and help more Americans understand how their government is working with communities to reduce drug use.

John Walters, Director of ONDCP and President Bush's "Drug Czar" said, "Over the past several years there has been an explosion in the number of Americans using emerging technologies to publish their views, learn about important issues, and to communicate with each other. We know that in order to remain effective communicators in this new information age, public institutions must adapt to meet the realities of these promising technologies. We hope that citizens, community leaders, and parents will use these new tools to learn more about what their government is doing to reduce the harms drugs cause and how they can join us in our efforts to make America safer."

Over the past two years, ONDCP, has implemented use of various "new media" technologies which has allowed the agency to promote successful anti-drug programs. In February 2005, ONDCP launched the first official blog for a Cabinet-level agency. ONDCP also posts podcasts of speeches, commentary from public health officials, and audio of anti-drug events.

The Office of National Drug Policy oversees all aspects of Federal drug control policy including drug treatment services, drug education programs, and efforts that stem the supply of illegal drugs to the United States. Over the past four years, there has been a 20 percent decline in the number of young people using illegal drugs. To learn more about ONDCP visit www.WhiteHouseDrugPolicy.gov or our blog at www.PushingBack.com.

To date, ONDCP has posted the entire series of "Above the Influence" anti-drug advertising (winner of several Telly and Addy advertising awards) online along with the release of the latest National Survey on Drug Use and Health. To view ONDCP video content, visit: www.YouTube.com/ONDCP