Pubdate: Fri, 09 Jun 2006
Source: Summerland Review (CN BC)
Copyright: 2006 The Summerland Review
Author: John Arendt
Bookmark: (Methamphetamine)


Forum Covers Effects Of Crystal Methampetamine

Former crystal meth addicts, addictions workers and  emergency 
services workers talked bluntly about the  effects of the drug at a 
forum on Thursday evening.

"Crystal meth destroyed my life, destroyed my family  and destroyed 
my friends," says Amanda, one of the  former addicts on the panel.

She started using the drug in Penticton and continued  in Summerland.

Eventually, she was arrested and was able to quit using  the drug 
while in jail. After she was released, she  spent six months in a 
treatment program in Penticton.

Hailey, another former user on the panel, also warned  against using 
crystal meth.

"It's just like the worst drug there is out there," she  says. "It 
just ruins your brain. I'm still in Grade 9  and I should be 
graduating this year."

She says the drug is highly addictive, explaining that  it took her 
31i?= 2 years to quit. She made the  decision to quit the drug after 
her mother died.

Jeremy Watson, an addictions counsellor with Teen  Challenge and a 
former meth addict, says coming off the  drug is a long process.

Jody Meyer, a drug addictions counsellor with Pathways  in Penticton, 
says methamphetamines have been around  for at least 40 to 50 years. 
Crystal methamphetamine is  a fully synthetic product which is potent 
and easy to  make.

Rick Treby of the B.C. Ambulance Service in Summerland  says the drug 
can take serious tolls on its users.

"It's not a pleasant sight to see someone who's 24 and  looks as if 
she's 40 years old because of the way the  drug's ravaged them," he says.

The forum was organized by the Summerland Asset  Development 
Initiative. It was set up to raise  awareness of the drug.
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