November 19, 2012 – Las Cruces, NM - On this edition of PUENTES, Emily Guerra bridges the community with Project Chairman of the Rotary Club’s “Don’t Meth With Us Project,” in Las Cruces, Mel Parish. He is going to tell us about the dangers of the most addictive substance currently known, and a menace to our society, methamphetamine, Also known as ice, crystal, speed and meth, once a person is addicted it is difficult to stop using.
In 1887, meth was first synthesized from the drug ephedrine; an organic substance used in China as medicine for hundreds of years. The first known epidemic of meth after World War II was in Japan. Both the U.S. and Japan used this form of the drug to improve their soldier’s performance during World War II.
In 2009 the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime reported that there were over 26 million meth addicts in the world and called it the most abused hard drug on earth. In the United States there were 1.5 million users and increasing. In New Mexico last year at least $3.4 million in street value of meth were confiscated.
Six years ago the Rotary Club in San Juan County developed an educational program to keep young people from ever trying meth. They began to educate fifth graders in their public schools every year, and have seen a drop in the number of arrests of those 18 and under, from about 36 per year to one in 2009.
This year the Las Cruces and Rio Grande Rotary Clubs joined together, in coordination with the Las Cruces Public Schools, to educate local sixth graders. The motto of the project is “We are the future! Don’t meth with us!” For more information you can contact Mel Parish at 575-522-0125 or 575-644-0102.