March 8, 2006

Ice Climbing

February 13, 2006

Meth Speech

On Thursday Deborah Durkin, from the Minnesota Department of Health, spoke to a packed Kirby Ballroom about the horrors of Methamphetamine’s and their far reaching effects through out the community. “The Meth problem is not getting better, it’s getting worse, and it’s here to stay,? said Durkin in the opening minutes of her speech. Durkin is not the only person who feels this way, when asked, police from all around the state said that Meth is the single largest problem that faces their communities.
Meth is a very large and expensive problem for the state of Minnesota. In 2005 the state paid 177.3 million dollars in Meth related costs, of that 3.5 million was devoted to the clean up of Meth labs. “Money is very tight, and the bills keep getting bigger,? Durkin said, “If you want to see what happens when we run out of Money, go to LeCenter, where two Meth labs are left abandoned, in the heart of the town, with no money to clean them up.?
In 2004 it was estimated that 4.9 percent of Americans are Meth users, which was down nearly half a percent from 2002. “Surprisingly the reduction in Methamphetamine use from 2002 to 2004 has not made the situation any better,? said Durkin. “There has been a decline in users, which is good, but of these current users 59.3 percent are considered “dependent,? whereas in 2002 the number of “Dependents? was 27.5 percent.?
“Since they started putting cold medicines behind the counter, we have seen a sharp reduction in “Mom and Pop,? Meth labs, an 80 percent reduction.? Durkin said. “However this may represent another problem. Those who were once cooking Meth in their homes for free will now have to find some other way to pay for their drugs, which normally means crime. Take Spokane Washington for example, where 90 percent of all property crimes, 93 percent of all felony charges, and 100 percent of identity thefts are related to Meth.?
Fortunately there may be a light at the end of this dark tunnel. “Minnesota, and a few other states are starting to take steps in the right direction,? Durkin said, “And finally the Federal Government is starting to see how big this issue really is.? Indeed the Federal Government is starting to realize the horrible potentials of Meth, and are just in the beginning stages of doing something about it.

February 9, 2006


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