Countywide : Anti-Drug Messages to Be in Spanish

An intensive anti-drug and anti-alcoholism campaign will soon be launched among an estimated 50,000 non-English-speaking Latinos.

In Spanish-language posters, pamphlets, forums and radio and TV announcements, the program, funded this week by the County Board of Supervisors, will urge Latino farm workers and recent immigrants to stay sober and drug-free for the sake of their families and themselves.

"These people have been underserved in the past," Stephen G. Kaplan, administrator of the county Department of Alcohol and Drug Programs, said after the Board of Supervisors approved a $25,000 contract to carry out the drive.

The educational blitz, as Kaplan described it, is scheduled to last until June 30. By then, El Concilio del Condado de Ventura, the Oxnard-based group that will conduct the drive, is expected to produce 8,000 pamphlets, 300 posters and more than 100 radio and TV announcements.

Marcos Vargas, El Concilio's executive director, said his organization will make 120 presentations and discussions to churches, labor camps, English classes and other groups countywide.

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