Hollister parents learn about the secrets of teen drug use

RALI Cares makes a stop at San Benito High School

Hollister parents learn about the secrets of teen drug use

HOLLISTER, Calif. - As hundreds packed San Benito High School's stadium for one of the biggest games of the year, parents got a look into a harsh reality.

"Parents aren't aware of what's going on here in the schools. All the different pilIs. I didn't even know what those pills looked like," said parent, Mona Beltran.

Teen drug use is hidden in homes across the United States. The group, RALI Cares, staged a bedroom outside of the stadium. The room belongs to a fictional teen battling addiction. Parents were shown the ways in which they hide it.

Items like water bottles, calculators, and toothpaste are used to store and hide drugs every day. RALI Cares is touring the country to teach parents what to watch out for. Hollister is their first stop in California. 

"Be aware of what your kids are doing. Look in their room. Look in their trash can. See what they are up to," said Dave Padgett, an educator with RALI Cares.

In the past two weeks, two Central Coast teens overdosed and died after taking opioids laced with fentanyl. Fentanyl is 50 to 100 times more powerful than morphine. 

"There is no silver bullet when it comes to finding a pathway to understanding drug addiction and opiate addiction. My takeaway is that prevention is key," said District 30 Assemblymember, Robert Rivas.

Parents who toured the staged bedroom said they have been given a new perspective. RALI Cares hopes it will help them intervene in their own home before it's too late.

"It has already affected people that I know. It's good to know and learn about it," said Beltran.

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