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How to Implement a Community-Based Designated Driver Program

  Program Planning
  Program Marketing

Tips for Specific Groups


  Educators/College Groups
  Criminal Justice
  Medical and Health Care Community
  Hospitality Industry and Retailers
  Armed Forces

Publicity and Promotion
  Working with the Media
  Calendar of Year Round Ideas
  Media Q&A

  Partners and Resources


Initiating partnerships with the media gives you an opportunity to provide reporters with the facts. Once you have sent out your materials, contacted your local media outlets, and participated in interviews, there are some results you should reasonably expect to see. These include:

  • Stories publicizing your efforts.
  • Stories highlighting the impaired driving problem in the nation and your community, as well as organizations (like yours) working to solve the problem.
  • Educational stories highlighting alternatives to impaired driving.
  • Reporters utilizing you as a community expert in future impaired driving stories.
  • Sponsorships by media organizations of community You Drink & Drive. You Lose. campaign events and activities.


Remember that there are two sides to every issue and some editors/producers might take a negative view of your efforts. There are times when a negative quote or story may appear about your coalition or its activities. You shouldn't let this discourage you from conducting activities in the future, or to continue promoting your efforts through the media. If you respond to a negative story, here are some basic rules:

  • Don't insult the writer or publication.
  • Be positive in your tone.
  • Correct wrong information clearly and concisely.
  • Use facts not emotions.


To encourage media coverage, it is important to make your promotion or event unique and compelling. The following ideas effectively demonstrate the severity of the impaired driving problem in a creative manner to gain media interest:

  • Placing a pair of empty shoes on the state capital steps for every victim of an impaired driving crash in the past 12 months.
  • Create life-size posters from pictures of those who died from impaired driving on the previous years holiday.
  • Place state flags in the ground corresponding with the number of impaired driving fatalities over the past 12 months.
  • Obtain a car that was damaged in an impaired driving crash and place it at the event site.
  • Hold a news conference in a hospital emergency room.
  • Stage a mock sobriety checkpoint at the media event.
  • Invite victims of impaired driving, law enforcement officers, and public officials to speak.
  • Use local or national statistics.
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