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Posts tagged: methamphetamines

Otter, first lady kick off next phase of Idaho Meth Project

Idaho Gov. Butch Otter and First Lady Lori Otter attended Brian Barber's health class at Boise High School this morning, with classes from four other high schools around the state watching online, to kick off the next phase of the Idaho Meth Project. The public-private anti-drug program is launching a new interactive teen website and advertising in eight states including Idaho, along with mobile and social media campaigns aimed at educating teens about the dangers of methamphetamine use.

Otter asked the Boise High kids, mostly sophomores and juniors with a sprinkling of seniors, “How many of you have heard about the meth project?” Most raised their hands. “That's encouraging,” he declared. Lori Otter told the kids the new website,, is “a resource you can go to that is factual, that lays it out, that does not sugar-coat it.” She said, “You are being presented with a valuable tool to help you and your friends make good choices in life.”

The students were receptive; some said they want to volunteer to help with the campaign. Like earlier Meth Project ads, the new TV commercials feature actors presenting shocking scenarios to illustrate the dangers of meth, while the radio ads and website rely more on actual teens' testimonials and experiences with the drug. The latest TV ads are directed by Darren Aronofsky, director of the movies “Black Swan” and “The Wrestler.” The website has games and activities centered on meth dangers, from a mugshot-match game to show how meth users' appearances change to an Operation-style activity showing the effect of the drug on different parts of the body, along with a place where teens can post their own art, poems, stories or other messages with an anti-meth theme.

This is the first time the project has launched a major campaign, including TV, radio, print, billboards and online advertising, in all eight states at once; the eight are Idaho, Arizona, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Montana and Wyoming.

Meth kingpin gets 20 years; it’s a 32-year-old woman from Homedale

Here's a news item from the Associated Press: BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A woman accused of leading a drug-peddling gang that brought methamphetamine into Idaho by the pound will spend 20 years in a federal prison. Amanda Smith of Homedale was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court in Boise. Prosecutors say the 32-year-old Smith sold 100 percent-pure methamphetamine to Norteno gang members, stashed the proceeds in out-of-state accounts and directed people to cross into Nevada and return to Idaho with their illicit cargo. Prosecutors say Smith once helped kidnap a drug customer at gunpoint, to make sure a payment for a drug deal was made. U.S. Attorney Wendy Olson said there's been an alarming spike in high-potency methamphetamine coming from California, Arizona, Nevada and Mexico. Three others in Smith's drug ring previously received sentences of up to 16 years behind bars.

Researcher: Meth decline not linked to ad campaign in Montana

A new study concludes that a multimillion-dollar advertising campaign to deter youths from trying methamphetamines has failed to speed up a long-standing decline in the drug’s use, the Associated Press reports. Economics researcher D. Mark Anderson of the University of Washington said Tuesday that abuse of the drug already was on the decline because of more aggressive law enforcement before the high-profile Montana Meth Project began in 2005. Identical programs have since been launched in seven other states: Arizona, Idaho, Illinois, Wyoming, Colorado, Hawaii and Georgia; click below for a full report from AP reporter Matthew Brown.

Survey: Idaho teen meth use drops by half

A new survey from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention shows teen meth use in Idaho dropped by 52 percent from 2007 to 2009, from 6.4 percent of teens using the drug to 3.1 percent. It was the largest decline of any state during that time period; meanwhile, the national rate of teen meth use dropped from 4.4 percent to 4.1 percent. “These numbers are extremely encouraging,” said Gov. Butch Otter. “They clearly demonstrate that Idaho’s integrated approach to addressing our methamphetamine problem is having an impact.” Click below for his full news release.

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Betsy Z. Russell covers Idaho news from The Spokesman-Review's bureau in Boise.

Named best state-based political blog in Idaho for 2013 by The Fix

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