Over the last two decades we have made significant progress in this effort. Just in 1979, more than 22 million Americans used illegal drugs. Five million used cocaine. Today less than 12 million Americans are regular drug users, and the number of cocaine users has dropped 30 percent in the past three years. But theproblem is still too great, and again, it is perplexing and troubling as it affects our juvenile population.

“When America is united we never lose.”

In the last three years we have tried to take many concrete steps to protect our children and their future. We’re working to get hard-core drug users off the street, to make sure they can’t commit crimes, and to get them into treatment. We’re bringing prevention to our schools by teaching our children that drugs are wrong, illegal, and dangerous. We’ve put more police on the street, and that is a major cause of the decline in the crime rate.

Earlier this year I signed a directive requiring drug testing of federal arrestees. We are doing all we can to stop drugs at their source, before they get to our borders.

But I know that we have to do more – as does Barry McCaffrey, the Director of National Drug Control Policy. There’s no one more capable to lead this effort than General McCaffrey. He has always taken a comprehensive view towards problem solving, and he knows that our efforts in the struggle against drugs will require a combination of treatment, prevention, education, enforcement and interdiction.

What We Can Do About the Drug Problem continued...

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