ABOUT THE PROGRAM
REACHING MILLIONS WITH THE MESSAGE
“THEY SAID, THEY LIED”
The effectiveness of The Truth About Drugs booklets led to a series of public service announcements, “They Said, They Lied.” with strong depictions of the destructive effects of the most prevalent drugs, the 16 PSAs are contemporary, high-impact communications aimed directly at youth.
These messages can effectively deter first-time drug use and form a vital component of the Truth About Drugs program.
The PSAs are designed to bring about increased awareness of the effects of drugs and to cut usage rates wherever they are broadcast. The first three ads address a common misconception leading to drug experimentation: the belief that taking drugs makes you cool (“Popular”), that one drug high won’t lead to addiction (“Just Once”), and that one hit can’t hurt you (“One Hit”).
The other PSAs address commonly used drugs: marijuana, alcohol, Ecstasy, cocaine, crack cocaine, crystal meth, inhalants, heroin, LSD and prescription painkillers. The messages are designed to present realistic situations and facts in a way that communicates to young people so they will listen. Each PSA corresponds to one of The Truth About Drugs booklets.
More than 500 television stations in some 100 countries have aired the Truth About Drugs PSAs. Industry communication experts give “They Said, They Lied” PSAs high ratings for rising above mass media noise and effectively reaching their intended audience. The messages have won Telly, Addy and other awards.
The PSAs have also received laudatory reviews from those responsible for teaching about drugs:
“The PSAs provided the students with an immediate connection, as they used people within their own age group with whom they could identify.” —Teacher, Canada
“I always use the PSAs to get their attention…The videos seem to start the discussions, and then student after student volunteers to share about their own lives and families. The impact is huge.” —Instructor, Utah
Since their release in 2008, the Truth About Drugs public service announcements have been viewed by tens of millions.
These messages provide a strong introduction to drug education presentations and are one of the components of the Truth About Drugs curriculum. They are utilized widely by government, law enforcement agencies, schools, community groups and other drug prevention programs.
In Honduras, where the National Council Against Drug Trafficking has partnered with Foundation for a Drug-Free World, the messages are used in presentations to senior military officers and cadets at the military academy.
Police officers from the Texas Crime Prevention Association use the PSAs and Truth About Drugs booklets in their drug education presentations.
In Panama, a drug education campaign was launched by regularly playing the PSAs through prime time on the country’s national television station, reaching 2 million viewers.
In Taiwan, the messages have likewise been played on national television to 5 million viewers and are used as part of the drug education curriculum in 500 schools.
Across the world, these powerful messages are saving youth from falling prey to the lure of drugs.