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Friday Facts: Government Information You Can Use

This Week's Facts:

  1. Alliance Unveils Campaign Focused on Breaking Bad Intentions

  2. Government Portal Aims to Protect Kids from Online Dangers

  3. Learn About a Widely-Observed Designated Week for the First Time

Indiana Courthouse Squares

Website Highlights Indiana's
Iconic Courthouses

View photographs and learn about Indiana’s Courthouses through the Indiana Courthouse Squares website created by Ball State University. Indiana’s county courthouses convey the variety and grandeur of the state’s architectural history.  In recent years, there was a renewed interest in restoring and preserving these buildings.  As a consequence, in 2008 the Indiana General Assembly passed Senate Bill 176 which created the Courthouse Preservation Advisory Commission.  The commission is tasked with providing information, recommendations, and support for historic courthouses across the state. The August 2011 Report of the Commission is available here:  Indiana’s Historic Courthouses.

The Indiana’s Courthouses site provides photographs of the courthouse buildings, with information about year built, architect, and the county seat with map links.  There are additional photos of the courthouse square and surrounding views from each county seat.  There is also a mobile version available.  For more courthouse angles, be sure to take a look at Daniel Hartwig’s Courthouse images at Ball State’s Digital Media Repository.

Friday Facts Editorial Team:

Katharine Springer
State Data Center Coordinator

Kim Brown-Harden
Federal Documents Coordinator

Andrea Glenn
State Documents Coordinator

Indiana Federal Depository Library Program

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Alliance Unveils Campaign Focused on Breaking Bad Intentions

Indiana Anti-Smurfing CampaignIndiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller helped unveil a statewide public awareness campaign on September 3, 2013 in Evansville to send a warning to those who buy certain medicines for the purpose of making meth.

Zoeller joined representatives from the Indiana Pharmacists Alliance, the Indiana Retailers Council, the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), local prosecutors, Evansville Mayor Lloyd Winnecke and other leaders to kick off the initiative in Evansville. The Indiana State Police recently determined Vanderburgh County leads the state for the number of meth labs found so far this year.

The voluntary educational campaign aims to increase public awareness about the criminal enterprise known as “smurfing” — the practice of purchasing cold and allergy medicines containing pseudoephedrine (PSE) to sell to methamphetamine cooks.

The awareness campaign informs consumers through signage displayed at the point of sale that smurfing is a criminal offense and an integral part of the meth production process. As a result, the simple act of buying certain cold or allergy product for a stranger can fuel Indiana’s meth problem.

The public-private partnership was developed by CHPA, a national association representing the makers of over-the-counter medicines, and is carried out by Indiana retailers on a voluntary basis. CHPA tested anti-smurfing posters to ensure that they communicate impactful messaging without deterring legitimate consumers.

The Indiana Pharmacy Alliance and the Indiana Retailers Council have already begun distributing anti-smurfing signage to retailers across the state. For more information on the campaign, please visit

Government Portal Aims to Protect Kids from Online Dangers Going back to school is about more than shiny shoes and trendy notebooks. It’s also about kids making new friends and adding those friends on social network sites like Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
More than 60 percent of teens in the United States have at least one social media account, according to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. And while being online is a good way to keep in touch with friends, it’s important for parents to be proactive about Internet safety.

Unfortunately, there are people who can use your child’s personal information to steal identities, bully them or begin an inappropriate relationship. Help protect students from online dangers by following these safety tips:

  1. Keep your child’s profile private so that only family and people you know see photos, important dates and other information.
  2. Make sure they’re not posting personal details, including phone numbers, home address, and the name of their school or Social Security number.
  3. Only allow them to publish photos and videos that don’t jeopardize their safety or their integrity.
  4. Make sure they choose a strong password that can’t be guessed, and that it gets changed every three months.
  5. Never allow them to accept friend requests from people they don’t know.
  6. Keep an open dialogue with your children. Ask them to let you know if they’ve received private messages from a stranger, or from someone at school who is teasing, harassing or threatening them. Those could be signs of cyber-bullying or even a sexual predator.

Get additional online safety tips, and other relevant information on, a great government resource for parents and teens. information is brought to you as a courtesy of the U.S. General Services Administration (GSA) via the blog.

Learn About a Widely-Observed Designated Week for First Time

Unmarried and Single Americans WeekThe Ohio Buckeye Singles Council started “National Singles Week” in the 1980s to celebrate single life and recognize singles and their contributions to society. The week is now widely observed during the third full week of September (Sept. 15-21 in 2013) as “Unmarried and Single Americans Week,” an acknowledgment that many unmarried Americans do not identify with the word “single” because they are parents, have partners, or are widowed. In this edition of Facts for Features, unmarried people include those who were never married, widowed, or divorced, unless otherwise noted.

  • There were 103 million unmarried people in America 18 and older in 2012. This group made up 44.1 percent of all U.S. residents 18 and older. (Source: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2012
  • 56 million households were maintained by unmarried men and women in 2012. These households comprised 46 percent of households nationwide. (Source: America’s Families and Living Arrangements: 2012)
  • There were 6.7 million unmarried-partner households in 2011. Of this number, 605,000 were same-sex households. (Source: 2011 American Community Survey)
  • 35 percent of voters in the 2010 November election were unmarried. (Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of 2010)
  • 39 percent of voters in the 2012 presidential election were unmarried, compared to 24 percent of voters in the 1972 presidential election. (Source: Voting and Registration in the Election of 2012)

Friday Facts is a free publication produced by the Indiana State Library, distributed weekly in an electronic format.
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