Wendy Jaquet, D-Ketchum, is the minority leader of the Idaho House of Representatives. She represents District 25, which includes Blaine County. She serves as the regional finance chairwoman of the Idaho Meth Project.
By WENDY JAQUET
After three months, I am sure you are no stranger to the hard-hitting and shocking messages of the Idaho Meth Project campaign. As a state representative, I have seen the devastating impact that methamphetamine has had on our families, communities and way of life in our state. I believe in the work of the Idaho Meth Project and its crucial role in helping our communities overcome this epidemic. For the healthy future of our great state, I would like to encourage you to help me support this critical program.
Modeled after the successful Montana Meth Project, the program is designed to reduce first-time meth use through a media campaign targeting youth. The "Not Even Once" message communicated by the Idaho Meth Project is an idea that needs to be adopted throughout our state to help reduce the grip that meth has on our communities, and prevent future generations from the physical and mental destruction that meth brings on people. Montana has seen an impressive 50 percent decrease in teen meth use in the two years since the program was implemented, and this is an end that we need to achieve in our own state.
This campaign will not only help to prevent our young citizens from falling victim to this highly addictive and dangerous drug, but the Idaho Meth Project is also designed to bring awareness and help to those individuals who are suffering from the repercussions of meth addiction.
Eighty percent of child placements by the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare are directly related to drug abuse, of which methamphetamine is the most prevalent. The effects of methamphetamine stretch far wider than just the drug users themselves, and this is why we need to support this project, which aims to support and help our communities.
Thousands of Idahoans have already donated to this life-saving program. Our citizens—public, private and corporate—are stepping up to make a difference for Idaho. The program has received donations ranging from $5 to $500,000, and all of these funds are going directly to pay for this critically important project. We simply cannot sit by and let methamphetamine tighten its grip on our communities and on young Idahoans.
This project is up and running, but it will take the support of our generous communities to keep the Idaho Meth Campaign and our state heading into a future with reduced meth use. Information on the Idaho Meth Project can be obtained at (888) 331-2060 or idahomethproject.org.