Entire community must join fight against meth

Mayor Marv Teixeira has declared Thursday as Carson City's recognition of National Methamphetamine Awareness Day.

In his proclamation, Teixeira wrote: "Solving the methamphetamine epidemic, and breaking the cycle of addiction in general, requires strong support for community awareness, but as critical is education and prevention, treatment and rehabilitation, enforcement and changes in public policy. This special day provides another opportunity to further raise community awareness and support for prevention, treatment and enforcement."

Although there is no traditional method to recognize such a day, we encourage all members of the community to find a way to get involved in the battle against meth.

It is a problem that affects all of us.

Between Jan. 1, 2004, and Oct. 31, 2005, the Nevada Department of Public Safety's nine narcotic task forces opened 1,131 drug-related cases, with 61 percent of those cases being meth-related.

Carson City Sheriff Kenny Furlong estimates upward of 80 percent of crimes committed in this town are somehow drug-related.

Either a person is high and committing a crime, or committing a crime in order to get high.

"If we could wipe out the meth problem, that would have tremendous impact on the loss of property in Carson City," he was quoted in a May article in the Appeal. "The earlier we can get to them and discourage those behaviors, the better off we will be."

Last year, the Carson City Board of Supervisors named combating meth use as its No. 1 priority.

Since then, Partnership Carson City, an anti-meth coalition has been formed, with various committees attacking the problem from different angles.

"We're going to continue to support this effort as long as it continues to plague our community," said Liz Teixeira, the city's community relations officer. "That's our commitment."

At the Appeal, our commitment is to keep the issue in the public discourse, to delve into the reasons why people turn to the drug, and search out possible solutions.

There are several things you can do as well. Become educated, talk to your children, be a vigilant neighbor, call the meth hotline 887-2020, ext. 6384, to anonymously report any suspicious behavior.

To solve this problem will take a commitment from each of us.


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