Iowa is the starting point for a new national media campaign targeted at stopping the use of the illegal drug methamphetamine. The Office of National Drug Control Policy and the Partnership for a Drug-Free America announced the new campaign today (Monday) in Des Moines.
Partnership president Steve Pasierb says the campaign looks to build on the success of Iowa’s new meth law that’s led to a dramatic decrease in meth labs. He says as the local drug labs were shut down, the supply of meth has moved in from elsewhere, and he says, “This is still a very real, very immediate threat to families and communities across Iowa.”
Pasierb says the campaign uses real life stories of people impacted by meth to show how the drug impacts not just the user, but everyone in the community. Pasierb says it’s about halting the problem by using the power of the media to keep the drug “from spreading the pain and destruction that we’ve seen in so many communities here in Iowa.” He says the message is aimed at young people to let them know what happens when you use meth. He says, “We want to avoid meth from becoming a mainstream drug. One of the things we know in America is that kids aspire upward.” Pasierb says the younger kids want to be like older kids and he says we need to stop meth from becoming a mainstream drug threat in Iowa and across America.
Pasierb says they have one goal — and it’s not just to increase awareness that there’s a problem. Pasierb says it’s about declining use and behavior change,”Just as we’ve seen the number of Clandestine labs go down, we want to see use go down. We want to see anti-meth attitudes improve.”
Two Des Moines woman who’re recovering meth addicts attended the announcement. Jamie Vandemark says these new messages may’ve impacted her life. She says the old ads didn’t appeal to her and she says these ads are more realistic and if the ads had been around when she was a child, the might have taken a look at them. Tanya Parks says she used drugs for years and didn’t change until she had her baby taken away. Parks says the new ads definitely would’ve had an impact on her life.
She says one of the ads that showed the impact of other people in the house when drugs are being used showed her that her drug use could’ve had an impact on her parents. To find out more about the ads, surf to www.drugfree.org.