Pubdate: Tue, 16 Oct 2001
Source: Olympian, The (WA)
Copyright: 2001 The Olympian
Bookmark: (Methamphetamine)


One week from tonight, on Oct. 23, a community-wide Town Hall Meeting 
on Meth will be held in Lacey. We encourage South Sound residents to 

Methamphetamine addiction is a growing problem in South Sound. Law 
enforcement officers and treatment professionals will tell you that 
individuals can get hooked on this insidious drug the very first time 
they use it. And sadly, meth addiction many times leads to heroin 

We've all read the stories about law enforcement officers and 
hazardous materials teams dismantling illegal meth labs in South 

Police recently were called to a Lacey motel to dispose of toxic 
chemicals from one lab.

The statistics for this highly addictive stimulant are staggering. 
More meth labs were cleaned up statewide in the first nine months of 
this year than in all of 2000, according to state officials.

Thurston County logged 105 meth lab cleanups by Sept. 30, with Pierce 
County the state's leader with 486 labs. King County busted 200 labs, 
while Spokane broke up 193 labs.

Nationally, Washington state ranks second behind California in meth raids.

South Sound residents can learn more about meth, or crank, at the 
upcoming town hall meeting sponsored by The Olympian, KGY Radio and 
Thurston Community Television.

The meeting will be from 7 to 8:30 p.m. at Lacey Community Center, 
6729 Pacific Ave. It will be broadcast live on KGY 1240 AM and taped 
for later broadcast on TCTV channel 22 or 29.

Residents can ask themselves why they should attend. Could you detect 
a meth lab operating in your neighborhood? Do you know the warning 
signs of meth use?

We hope our panel of experts will be able to provide answers to those 
and other questions from the audience. The program will feature five 
speakers, each offering five-minute presentations. About one hour 
will be set aside for questions from the audience.

The program will begin with Officer Jim Chamberlain, leader of the 
Thurston County Narcotics Task Force. He will offer the law 
enforcement perspective. Chamberlain will tell the audience what meth 
is, why people use it and how meth use impacts police officers and 
local crime statistics.

Jody Sheridan, coordinator of Thurston County's Court Appointed 
Special Advocate program, will talk about the impact of meth use and 
addiction on family members. Dr. Thomas Burke will offer the 
perspective of an emergency room doctor. He sees meth users at their 

Gerald Tousley, hazardous waste specialist for Thurston County, will 
speak about cleanup issues and the hazards meth chemicals pose to 

The final speaker is Brandon Schneider, a recovering meth addict who 
has a compelling story to tell about his descent into addiction, his 
experience with drug court, drug treatment and recovery.

The town hall meeting is an opportunity for South Sound residents to 
learn more about the multi-faceted problems associated with the use 
of methamphetamine.

It's also an opportunity to have your questions answered and to learn 
about existing resources in the community.

We encourage you to attend this important meeting one week from today 
at the Lacey Community Center.
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