WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (April 6, 2010) – Research from the insurance industry, The Partnership at Drugfree.org (formerly The Partnership for a Drug-Free America), and Students Against Destructive Decisions (SADD) shows 70 percent of high school juniors and seniors expect their peers to drink and drive on prom night. In fact about 4 in 10 of all traffic fatalities on prom and graduation weekends are alcohol-related.
For over 21 years Safe Sober Prom Night has been using positive peer pressure to help high school students make smart choices on prom night. David Daggett, co-founder of this incredible program, says he often meets students whose parents participated in the program when he started it in 1991. Daggett is proud to be bringing the Safe Sober message to a whole new generation of teenagers and is looking forward to giving T-shirts to their kids someday. He probably will, too. The Safe Sober Prom Night program, presented by Daggett Shuler Attorneys, is believed to be the longest running privately funded initiative of its type in the country.
Daggett’s enthusiasm for young people coupled with his drive to help kids make better life decisions are the catalyst for this impressive program. Daggett says his work as an attorney gave him firsthand knowledge of the life-shattering effects of underage alcohol use. Daggett created Safe Sober Prom Night as a way to reduce the number of alcohol related tragedies associated with prom night. He thought that promoting the idea of kids taking a pledge to remain safe and sober on prom night would reduce the growing number of accidents and deaths related to teen alcohol use.
“Positive messages to our youth ensure the quality of our community for years to come,” says Griff Shuler. “Many students really don’t need a lot to be influenced. A kind smile or word of encouragement will make their day. We love being with the students, and they seem to enjoy being with us too.” According to Daggett, “This isn’t just a program against drugs and alcohol, but also an avenue to let us have a positive and influencing impact on teens in our community.”
Originally, the program involved handing out free T-shirts at Hanes Mall to kids who signed a pledge not to drink and drive on prom night. This year, David Daggett and Griff Shuler, along with teams from their law firm, will hand out over 14,000 free T-shirts at 32 area high schools. So far, more than 400,000 students have signed the campaign’s “Do It Right!” pledge.
Daggett’s commitment to local students through Safe Sober Prom Night has earned him high regard in the school community. Daggett is often asked to speak at school board events and school system meetings. Each year new schools contact Daggett Shuler asking to be included in the program. Daggett says he is thrilled to make the ideas and materials available to any school that wants to use them. Ask Daggett about the schools throughout the country using the Safe Sober logo and pledge cards and he says, “A positive impact on future generations makes our communities better and stronger. We are pleased to see other areas embrace their students and help deliver our message.”
Now in its 21st year, Safe Sober Prom Night is now a spring tradition that students and teachers look forward to. One of the most popular aspects of the Safe Sober Prom Night program is the annual contests that are offered to students. The first is a T-shirt design contest. Art teachers at area high schools encourage students to be creative and design a logo that will be featured on the front of all of the Safe Sober T-shirts. Daggett Shuler offers a $500 scholarship to the student who designs the winning T-shirt logo. This year’s winner was Cassandra Ellis, a student at Career Center High School and Forsyth Middle College.
Safe Sober Prom Night also promotes a video contest in which students are asked to develop a short video related to Safe Sober Prom Night. The entries are posted on safesober.com to be viewed and voted on. The winner of that contest also gets a $500 Scholarship. There are also incentives for the schools. The school with the highest participation rate each year is given a $500 scholarship by Daggett Shuler.
Each year, as part of the Safe Sober program, Daggett Shuler brings in a nationally known program for a series of presentations at area high schools, civic organizations and church groups. This year the firm is pleased to present the nationally recognized Street Smart program for a week of presentations the week of April 11, 2011. Street Smart is a group of firefighter paramedics that has a fabulous program that delivers a strong message while being engaging and entertaining.
David Daggett has received numerous accolades and awards for the Safe Sober program, including The North Carolina Governor’s Highway Safety Award for Public Service, an honor never before given to a law firm. He has also been given the American Bar Association Award for Dignity in Lawyer Advertising for his promotion of Safe Sober Prom Night. Recently he received the Ford Ironman Everyday Hero Award which included being featured on ESPN and Universal sports.
Safe Sober Prom Night continues to grow through community support and David Daggett is proud to make it part of the culture at Daggett Shuler. “We truly believe that unless future generations turn out better than ours, both have failed. So, we each have an obligation to do our part in order to succeed,” says Daggett. “That obligation extends far beyond prom night. When you transform a life, you know you have made a lasting difference – it can’t get any better than that!”
For more information visit safesober.com and please encourage all of the teenagers you know to “like” Safe Sober Prom Night on www.Facebook.com/SafeSoberPromNight
Daggett Shuler, Attorneys at Law, principal office is based at 2140 Country Club Road, Winston-Salem, NC 27104. The firm handles personal injury claims including serious injuries, automobile accidents, workers’ compensation and social security disability. They have received national recognition for their Safe Sober Prom Night program. www.SafeSober.com www.DaggettShulerLaw.com