re:TH!NK members were alarmed after results of the 2009 YRBS (Youth Risk Behavior Survey) data showed local youth surpassed the state average in prescription drug use. In response to this concerning trend, coalition members partnered with the Wisconsin Crime Prevention Practitioners to create a community toolkit to combat the problem called Good Drugs Gone Bad. As a result, over 300 educators were trained on the dangers of illegal or misused pharmaceuticals. About 25 presentations to date have been conducted to target group including general community members, parents, teens and older adults to define security measure for pills. This educationally driven campaign was supported with Oshkosh cinema ads, marketing and large scale promotion. This campaign has received statewide recognition through the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Association (SAMHSA) Service to Science Award.

re:TH!NK’s Advocacy Committee enjoyed routine participation, doubling its membership in 2011. Legislators, treatment specialists, coroners, tavern owners, judges, police administrators representatives from the League of Women’s Voters and more are at the table to discuss needed policy changes in Winnebago County regarding access and acceptability of alcohol/drug use, and healthier living. They handled delicate issues and surveyed the Oshkosh Tavern League on their interest of specific alcohol control policies. The passage of the 24/7 Mandated Sobriety program was piloted in 2011 to reduce OWI recidivism and change the consequences of those who have more than one violation for driving while intoxicated. Participants now have to demonstrate sobriety by blowing into a PBT or wearing a scram bracelet. The Advocacy Committee also kept re:TH!NK partners updated on statewide legislation regarding prescription drug misuse.

Coalition members worked with local elected officials across the County to pass synthetic cannabinoid (K2) ordinances making it illegal to use, possess, purchase, attempt to purchase, sell, publicly display for sale or attempt to sell, give, or barter the drug. Winnebago County also adopted a “social host” ordinance making it unlawful for any person to host or allow an event or gathering to any residence, premises, or private/public property where alcoholic beverages are present when the person knows that an underage person will or does consume. The statewide smoke-free air law, adopted in 2010, was incorporated into local ordinances in many municipalities. Winnebago County went further to ensure residents can breath clean air by restricting tobacco use around County-owned building entrances.