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Government mulls on implementing mandatory drug tests for college admissions

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Is it high time to implement mandatory drug testing for all college students?

It was first quarter this year when the then incoming President Rodrigo Duterte calls out the police and military force to intensify the their campaign against illegal drugs.

A rough estimate of over three (3) million Filipinos are using illegal drugs. Due to the re-enforced implementation of Republic Act No. 9165, otherwise known as Comprehensive Dangerous Drugs Act of 2002, an estimated around 700,000 users have surrendered and a more or less 2400 suspected users were killed in buy bust operations.

In its aim to lessen, if not totally eliminate, the drug crisis in this country, several measures have been done by our government to solve the illegal drug use in this country.  The Presidential Communications Office, in cooperation with MTRCB, has lauched series of anti-drug advertisements to be shown on national TV to raise awareness to families on the ill effects of drugs to the one’s body, respective family and the society in general.

As part of the government’s battle against substance abuse and drug trade, the government mulls on subjecting incoming college students to mandatory drug testing.

“This was born out of the president’s call to make campuses drug-free, because we see the pervasive effects of drug use,” Julito Vitriolo, the executive director of the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), said in a television interview.

“What’s important is for students not to use drugs. It will be a deterrent if they want to continue their studies,” Vitriolo said, adding that those testing positive could go through rehabilitation before being admitted to college.

Currently, the drug testing in schools is on voluntary basis and depending upon the discretion of the school administration.

In recent statistics from the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA), 28.34% of those admitted to rehabilitation facilities for drug users or abusers are of college level. Mostly are single males who are unemployed.

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