MANSFIELD, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) — If you've been to a high school football game in North Texas, you've seen the massive crowds they can draw.
Now, a new program launched by the Texas Attorney General's Office is working to educate these crowds about youth opioid abuse and how to fight it.
Mansfield ISD is one of the first districts to get on board. At Thursday's game, there were public service announcements and volunteers passing out drug disposal packets. They offer a way to dispose of potentially dangerous drugs found in medicine cabinets.
"I think it's great that the school district is stepping up and trying to get the word out," parent Jennifer Carlile said.
Earlier this year, The Texas High School Coaches Association was approached by the Texas Attorney General's Office. It reached out to athletic directors across the state asking them to join the "Friday Night Lights Against Opioids" initiative.
"We looked at it and felt like it was something that was important to try and get out ahead of," Mansfield ISD Executive Director of Athletics Philip O'Neal said.
"It's one of the things that we're all concerned about, how that's trending."
"It is surprising to me the ease of access that kids have to drugs nowadays," parent Melina Williams said. "It's gotten so much easier for them to simply go in the cabinet to get drugs."
She believes this will make a difference.
"You don't necessarily think to count your pills to see how many you have to make sure your child's not taking them," she said. "I'm glad the district is trying to do something about it."
Since this is a pilot program, only 13 Texas school districts are currently participating.
The hope is next year more schools will join and the program will be able to pass out 3.5 million drug disposal packets a year.
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