HILLSBOROUGH, NJ – Students and parents got a sobering dose of reality from speaker Michael DeLeon -  founder  of “Steered Straight”- a recovering addict and reformed gang member who shared his battle with addiction, crime and the downward spiral that landed him in jail and halfway houses for 12 years.

 DeLeon was the guest at two assemblies at Hillsborough High School last week, speaking with the sophomore class during the day, and to parents that evening.

His mission is to steer today’s youth away from drug use and poor decisions.

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DeLeon’s message to the parents focused on several topics including the benefits of engaging children and young adults in constructive conversations, educating parents on drug and alcohol abuse and the path that leads to addiction, the what/how/where of drugs in our community, and the issues surrounding the legalization of marijuana in New Jersey.

He offered a long list of resources to parents who attended the evening program including videos, brochures, contacts, and websites.

Organizations including the Hillsborough/Millstone Municipal Alliance, Carrier Clinic, Empower Somerset, Princeton House, Family Center for Change, and Narcotics Anonymous were also on hand in the school lobby to provide parents with information.

Parents who were unable to attend the presentation are invited to go online to view the presentation on the Steered Straight website.

DeLeon also shared with parents his “Table Talk” calendar, an easy “starter kit of topics” to open up the lines of communication with young adults.

He is the founder and powerhouse behind Steered Straight Inc., a non- profit organization formed in 2000 designed to carry an important message to youth on the extreme dangers of drugs, gang involvement and associated criminal activity.

Since his release from prison, he has earned 3 Associates Degrees, a Baccalaureate Degree in Business Management, with a minor in Criminal Justice and a CADC Educational Certificate. 

Steered Straight was presented by the Hillsborough/Millstone Municipal Alliance, Governor’s Council on Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, Safe Coalition of Hunterdon and Somerset, Hillsborough Life Skills, and Steered Straight. For upcoming events regarding drug and alcohol abuse as well as parenting workshops, please visit the Municipal Alliance website at BoroAWARE.org.

To learn more visit http://itcanthappentomeism.com/.