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Substance Use and Addiction

“Just say no” is a limited frame for addressing issues of substance use and addiction. Advocates need to tell a different story.

Substance use outreach and advocacy work can be derailed by the public belief in the role of individual choice and willpower. FrameWorks’ research helps widen the lens on substance use issues.

Some frame shifts are straightforward—like naming the range of substances that may harm youth, rather than relying on the phrase “drugs and alcohol.” Other strategies seek to reshape the overall narrative, moving from a story about the scope of the problem to society’s responsibility to address it.

Explore frames that can help to build support for youth prevention, explain early intervention, translate key findings from the science of addiction, and more.

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