District attorneys target drug abuse

District attorneys target drug abuse
District Attorney Tommy Thomas is joining with other district attorneys across the state for a statewide campaign to fight he rising rates of prescription medication and synthetic drug abuse among Tennessee’s youth.
The campaign, Deceptive Danger, has been launched because Tennessee’s youth are deceived into thinking that any substance prescribed by a doctor or purchased at a convenience store is safe, according to a news release.
Campaign materials include a new educational DVD, two posters and a brochure.
Also, district attorneys will be making presentations and distributing the materials to public middle and high schools across the state. The presentations are being supported by a partnership with the state Department of Education.
School official interested in scheduling a presentation for their school or organization should call Thomas’ office at (731) 364-5513.
The Deceptive Danger campaign follows and increase in prescription medication and synthetic drug abuse in Tennessee.
The rise in prescription drug abuse prompted law enforcement agencies to focus their attention on fraudulent prescriptions, the operations of pain management clinics or “pill mills” and those dealing prescription medications illegally.
“With the help of my fellow district attorneys, I am continuing the fight against drug abuse in Tennessee through the Deceptive Danger campaign,” Thomas said. “Our goal is to educate Tennessee’s middle and high school students and their parent about the dangers of synthetic and prescription drug abuse.”
The Deceptive Danger DVD shows real Tennesseans fighting through potentially deadly addictions to prescription medications and synthetic drugs. Their stories reveal how devastating these addictions are. The video contains information about the dangers of prescription medication and synthetic drug abuse and the legal consequences of using and selling the substances.
“Prescription medication and synthetic drug abuse is a growing problem in Tennessee and one that we must curb as quickly as possible. The Deceptive Danger campaign gives our DAs a chance to show young Tennesseans the repercussions of using these drugs that may appear relatively harmless to them at first. Everybody needs to know these drugs are very dangerous,” Guy Jones said. He is deputy director of the Tennessee District Attorneys General Conference.
Tennessee lawmakers enacted stricter and more specific laws earlier this year dealing with synthetic drug use. The new laws make the sale and use of all synthetic drugs illegal. Previously, synthetics manufacturers were continuously skirting the law by changing the chemical composition of the synthetic drugs.
The unknown composition of synthetic drugs makes them especially dangerous and their effects are unpredictable, according to a news release.
The Deceptive Danger campaign complements the actions of law enforcement agencies and legislative actions with increased public awareness.
For more information about the Deceptive Danger campaign, go to www.tndagc.org.
Published in The WCP 10.23.12

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