The battle against methamphetamine will be won or lost at the community level. To be sure, federal and state legislations can provide tools, resources, and facilitate a national conversation about methamphetamine. However, ultimately it is each citizen, law enforcer, educator, business leader and public health official who must confront the harsh realities associated etc.
A critical component of any states efforts to address this emerging threat is the mobilization of their communities. While there may be differences in strategies between urban and rural areas, raising awareness and marshalling limited resources must remain a priority for all communities.
Probably the most successful and replicable model for community mobilization against methamphetamine is to be found in Washington state. Under the leadership of the local County Sheriff and the Community Mobilization Coordinator, County Meth Action Teams bring together business owners, law enforcement, prosecutors, children and family service providers, prevention drug treatment specialists, media, community leaders and youth.
Even though the meth epidemic has profoundly affected all of these groups, in the past they often worked in isolation. When they come together, compare notes, and coordinate their actions, real progress is made in tackling the meth problem. Washington state, through the meth initiative?s technical assistance teams from Safe Streets in Tacoma and the Greater Spokane Substance Abuse Action Council, has organized Meth Action Teams in all etc. 39 Washington counties. As of 2003, nearly 6,000 people were involved in a local Meth Action Team.
Meth Action Teams across the state of Washington speak with a single voice. They have real power ? to get new legislation passed, attract federal funding and start drug court and treatment programs. They create safe and healthy communities. Meth Action Teams do the following activities:
Explore this model of community mobilization and try tested strategies, policies and programs. For more information on Meth Action Teams, return to the home page map, click on Washington state and then choose any or all of the counties for descriptions of Meth Action Team activities and practices.
Communities all across America are suffering from the plague of methamphetamine production and usage. These communities, many of which are rural and suburban, are looking for effective and innovative ways to fight back against this illegal menace. Meth Watch is the first national effort aimed at curbing the spread of methamphetamines, and provides a critical step in reducing the availability of meth in communities nationwide.
Started in Kansas as a public-private partnership between law enforcement, state officials, and the retail community, Meth Watch is designed to help curtail the suspicious sale and theft of common household products used in the illicit manufacturing of methamphetamine. Meth Watch is a voluntary program that involves a variety of people at the community and state level, although retail involvement is the cornerstone of this program. Websites for state-based Meth Watch programs are available below. These links will provide states interested in learning more about the Meth Watch program with the resources needed to implement and maintain a Meth Watch program.