HTTP/1.0 200 OK Content-Type: text/html Cop Gives Anti-Drug Lecture Tomorrow
Pubdate: Tue, 09 Apr 2002
Source: Cambridge Reporter, The (CN ON)
Copyright: 2002 The Cambridge Reporter


Head of Police Drug Branch Speaks at Monsignor Doyle

Legalize pot? Forget about it, says Staff Sergeant Ray Massicotte, head of 
Waterloo Regional Police's drug squad.

"I've heard all the arguments," says Massicotte, "but I've yet to hear one 
good reason why marijuana should be decriminalized or legalized."

Marijuana may not be as bad as some drugs, an admission that is a lot 
different than saying it's good for anybody.

A lot of kids are under the impression that pot is harmless, a notion 
Massicotte will be taking to task tomorrow when he hosts a community 
anti-drug presentation at Monsignor Doyle Catholic Secondary School.

Massicotte's professional involvement with drugs began in 1983 as an 
undercover police officer. He has headed the local drug branch since 
January 2001.

Education is the most important component in the fight against drugs, says 
Massicotte, and the best schooling should start at home.

Parents think nothing of warning a four or five year old to look both ways 
before crossing a street, but often say nothing about the dangers from drug 
their kids are liable to face attending a party.

Part of the ongoing parent-child drug dialogue should focus on situational 
analyses; rehearsing with the child their responses to invitations from 
their peers to share alcohol or drugs.

"The kids should know in advance how they are going to react or respond 
when someone comes up to them and offers them a joint."

Kids need guidance form their parents. Parents need contemporary 
information about the drug scene, which bares little resemblance to the 
scene of 20 or 30 years ago.

Pot today is more potent, in more ways than one. Not only is marijuana 
richer in THC, but the product is often laced with chemicals used to 
accelerate its growth, herbicides and pesticides - all of which are 
obviously unhealthy to ingest, he says.

Massicotte's experiences have convinced him that marijuana is a "gateway" 
drug that leads many on a path of harder drug use.

"I've not met one heroin addict, one crack addict that didn't start with 

His message at the school will be augmented by a presentation from a 
recovering drug addict; an appearance by CLEAN - Community Link Empowered 
Against Narcotics - and by Pat Fisher from the Waterloo Region Public 
Health Department.

The event starts at 7 p.m. and is open to the community.
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