Drug-Related Headlines from Across the US
I have included information
regarding a Luzerne County Pa. moms' press release
regarding a walk from her house to the White House for
Drug Free America, starting October 20th! Below
that press release are the D&A headlines from across
the nation this past week.
Deb Fowler/ Remembering
Adam, Kathy Berry/HEADSUP and I participated in Public
Service Announcements for Pennsylvania Attorney General
Mike Fisher to be aired the next few weeks for the Red
Ribbon Campaign. The PSA's will be broadcast on aprox
50-60 radio stations throughout the Commonwealth.
Sharon Smith, Founder of MOMSTELL
information is below is her press release.
Take A Stance Come Out And Dance for a Drug Free
Another Step Forward For Local Mom Who Plans to Take To
The Roadways In An Ongoing Attempt To Create Awareness and
Find Solutions For A Drug Free America.
Sharon Manganiello, mother of six and grandmother of six,
from West Pittston, Pennsylvania, is preparing to once
again pound the pavement in her pursuit of a drug free
America. Manganiello, who first traveled to Washington DC
in October 1997 on a 2 week, 24mile a day 300 mile trip,
then one year later walked and biked from the Atlantic to
the Pacific in a 2 and a half month, 3500 mile trek, is
now planning to dance her way to our Nation's Capitol in a
week long Dance Marathon, October 20th through October
24th. Her route will span from her local communities of
Northeast Pennsylvania, all the way to 1600 Pennsylvania
Avenue, Washington DC.
Manganiello, now 52, first took to the streets over five
years ago when she realized that something had to be
done. “We were losing six young people to heroin in a
weeks time”, “something had to change”, said Manganiello.
While she has been able to accomplish many milestones over
the past five years, which include meeting with former
Drug Czar, General Barry McCaffrey, Congressman Paul
Kanjorski and Senator Ray Musto, serving on the Heroin
Task Force and uniting 2 large counties in “Uniting
Counties for Drug Awareness”, Started “Another Step
Forward Foundation”, she realizes that the problem is far
from solved. Manganiello’s main goal has always been to
have parents, communities and schools all working together
to keep kids drug free and to achieve this she strives to
keep the awareness alive and most of all growing. As she
takes “Another Step Forward”, she will be concentrating on
finding solutions. Solutions that she believes will come
from drug prevention, education and intervention.
What makes this event different from her last two journeys
is that this time Manganiello plans to involve as many
schools and communities as she can. She is asking for the
participation of all local school districts and
communities along the way. "We need everybody to be a
part of the solution," says Manganiello. She will be
asking school districts along her path to Washington DC,
to organize their own school and community dance marathon
event in celebration of drug awareness, as she has her own
dance marathon from October 20 until her arrival on
October 24th, at the White House. These dates will
coincide with National Red Ribbon Week, which is the
official drug awareness week. All monies raised by the
schools during the dance marathon will remain right there
in that school district for the use of education and
supporting the ongoing efforts of drug awareness.
Proceeds from Manganiello's marathon will go toward the
"Wall of Sorrow" a traveling monument dedicated to the
memories of lost students, parents and community members
as a result of our ongoing drug problem.
Now more than ever awareness has become critical. Each
day more and more funding is being cut, benefits are
lessened but the problem hasn’t decreased in fact children
are starting at an earlier age to use and as a result by
the time they are in high school they are full blown
addicts. Manganiello’s message is simply “we need
everybody involved no matter how large or small your
involvement is we can’t do it without you!”
When asked why do you continue to do this? Manganiello,
responded “Because we don’t want us to become so
desensitized to a problem that has reached epidemic levels
in all of our communities, that it become something that
is acceptable or something that we think we have to get
use to” and “Because drugs do not have to be a part of our
children’s adolescent and teenage lives” and “Because if
one person can get prayer out of schools and a few can
threaten our Nation’s Pledge of Allegiance, why can’t we
as parents, teachers and American citizens get drugs out
of our schools and communities!” “It’s time for us to
regain control of our neighborhoods, schools and
communities.” “It’s time for us to allow our children to
be the best they can right from the start before they have
to go through a recovery program”. “If I can stop just
one unnecessary drug related death or just one child from
having to go through rehabilitation or have one recovering
addict to survive and succeed, then I will know that each
step I took, whether it was walking, biking or dancing, it
was worth it! “
For more information on how you can become involved in
“Take a Stance come out and Dance” please contact Paula
Gogas at (570) 655-2987 or Sharon Manganiello at (570)
479-3563 or email email@example.com
10% IN CITY ADDICTED
About 60,000 District residents, more than one in 10,
are addicted to illicit drugs or alcohol, and substance
abuse costs the city $1.2 billion each year in lost
productivity, illness, premature death and crime and
incarceration, a study released yesterday by Mayor
Anthony A. Williams has found.
The two-year study, which sought to measure the scope
and effects of substance abuse, also found that half of
all people arrested for violent crimes in Washington
test positive for narcotics.
CHRISTIAN SCIENCE MONITOR:
STEEP RISE IN ABUSE OF LEGAL DRUGS
Log onto e-mail anytime, and you can find one
explanation for the recent dramatic and deadly spike in
the abuse of prescription drugs.
"Get ANY D-R-U-G-S You NEED!!" declares a piece of spam
that was sent on a recent morning. "OUR U.S. Doctors
will Write YOU a Prescription You will get it NEXT-DAY
It is simple and anonymous, and has helped lead to what
experts are calling a national epidemic of abuse of
everything from painkillers to sedatives to stimulants.
Between 1995 and 2002, there was a 163 percent increase
in the number of emergency-room visits tied to the abuse
of prescription drugs, according to the Substance Abuse
and Mental Health Services Agency.
SAMSHA estimates 9 million people now abuse prescription
drugs, meaning they use them for nonmedical, and often
recreational, purposes. Three million abusers are kids
between the ages of 12 and 17 years old. And the abuse
can be deadly: Prescription drugs now play a factor in a
quarter of all overdose deaths reported in the US.
LOS ANGLES TIMES:
DRUNK-DRIVING REFORMS STIR SAFETY DEBATES
After a radical transformation of the nation's
drunk-driving laws in recent years, a new battle is
shaping up over just how the federal government can
reduce some of the roughly 17,000 highway deaths every
year that involve alcohol.
Congress is expected in the coming months to reauthorize
national transportation funding covering the next six
years, and a major restructuring of drunk-driving policy
is likely to occur.
"There is a schism between all of the highway safety
organizations about drunk-driving policy," said Jonathan
Adkins, spokesman for the Governors Highway Safety
Assn., a Washington, D.C.-based coalition of state
organizations. "This is a lot more complicated than just
saying you are against drunk driving."
Several states this week, facing the threat of losing
federal highway funding, completed significant reform of
THE MISSOULIAN (MT):
JUDGES QUESTION NEW
UNDERAGE DRINKING LAW
The legality of a tough, new state law that holds
parents accountable for youths arrested with alcohol is
in question because of a barrage of concerns judges from
around the state have raised with the attorney general's
The controversial law, which was passed by the 2003
Legislature and went into effect Wednesday, calls for
mandatory confiscation of offending youths' driver
licenses, higher fines and parents to pay for and attend
substance abuse education classes with their children.
The parent-child classes would only be required if
children fail to comply with their original sentence.
THE WASHINGTON TIMES:
TO BE POSTED AT 10 METRO STATIONS
Metro subway stations will soon display a batch of ads
promoting the legalization and taxation of marijuana as
a means to improve sex, save taxes and protect children.
The poster ads, sponsored by the Massachusetts-based
nonprofit group Change the Climate Inc., had been
displayed on Metro buses, billboards and bus shelters
during the past month. They are expected to be posted at
10 subway stations as early as Monday, said Metro
spokesman Steven Taubenkibel.
D.C. Council member Jim Graham, chairman of Metro's
Board of Directors, said, "These ads are intolerable,
and we need to review our policies so that First
Amendment considerations are not allowed to compel us to
accept this type of advertising."
MANUFACTURE, USE EXPANDS IN AREA
Law-enforcement authorities are concerned that the use
of the hallucinogen phencyclidine, better known as PCP,
is on the rise with the expansion of high-volume
laboratories into several states, including Maryland.
According to the Drug Enforcement Administration,
authorities are seeing drug gangs across the country
that produce and distribute PCP expand their bases of
The drug rings, primarily black gang members, are
centered in Los Angeles and Houston, although a recent
DEA update noted what it described as "the recent
emergence of large PCP laboratories in other locations,"
including Maryland. The DEA called the expansion in the
number of known PCP labs a "cause for concern."
DRUG TAX GARNERS MILLIONS
FOR STATE COFFERS
Iowa has raked in more than $4.3 million over the past
13 years from special taxes on a little-known source -
the dealers and users of illegal drugs.
The money, collected largely from seized bank accounts,
tax liens and garnisheed wages, comes to state coffers
through a 1990 law that requires illegal-drug users to
buy special, confidentially sold stamps, which are
ignored by nearly everyone but a handful of hobbyists.
Iowa revenue agents readily admit that the drug tax is a
low priority for state collectors. Now, some Iowa
lawmakers wonder whether the stamp tax could be a source
of needed revenue in tough economic times.
EDITORIAL: TIGHTEN THE DUI STANDARD
lawmakers stood up for their principles during the last
legislative session by refusing to be blackmailed by the
Rather than being forced to lower the drunken driving
standard to 0.08, the state bid adieu to much-needed
highway funds, allowing legislators to beat their chests
and trumpet states' rights.
Legislators have had their fun and now it's time to do
what's right for the right reasons, regardless of the
federal blackmail game.
AFGHANISTAN'S POPPY HARVEST YIELDING VIOLENCE, GROUPS
worker dies in an ambush on a blind curve up a steep
mountain road. Around the bend is a poppy field, a prime
suspect in violence that is bogging down Afghanistan's
rebuilding while its drug trade blooms.
Aid groups are fleeing in terror. They blame much of
their exodus from the southern third of the country on
its $1.2 billion export drug crop, which purportedly
finances Islamic extremist violence, ethnic blood feuds,
warlords' activities, provincial property disputes and
competing political movements.
The agencies that monitor the pulse of conflict zones
point to a rise in ambushes and execution-style killings
that coincide with the southeast's autumn harvest of the
"Narcoterrorism" has become an increasingly entrenched
factor in the violence that is meant to keep southern
and eastern Afghanistan - the world's poppy belt -
off-limits to outside assistance, said Paul Barker,
country director for the charity CARE.
LOS ANGELES TIMES:
HOOKS STRUGGLING FARMERS
Throughout Afghanistan, thousands who had not grown
opium before began harvesting their crops in May, taught
by experienced poppy farmers who have been traveling to
new growing areas to share their skills.
Afghanistan regained its position as the largest opium
producing country last year, yielding 3,750 tons, and
production is expected to be as high this year, the U.N.
Office on Drugs and Crime reports. Seventy-five percent
of the world's heroin, which is obtained from opium
poppies, comes from Afghanistan.
COLUMBIA STATE (SC):
REJECTS APPEAL OF DRUG-USING MOM
Pregnant women who use illegal drugs likely will not
face a new wave of prosecutions in South Carolina
despite a U.S. Supreme Court ruling Monday clearing the
way, state prosecutors said.
The nation's top court without comment declined to hear
the appeal of Regina McKnight, an Horry County woman
convicted in 2001 of killing her fetus by using cocaine.
The court's decision, in effect, upholds her conviction.
In May, McKnight asked the high court to overturn a
sharply divided January ruling by the S.C. Supreme
She is serving a 12-year prison sentence for homicide by
child abuse — the stiffest penalty, her lawyers say, for
any South Carolina woman convicted of harming her unborn
PART OF DUI
LAW IS ERASED; STATE'S IMPLIED CONSENT FLAWED, COURT
The Georgia Supreme Court on Monday overturned a key
provision of a state law used to obtain convictions of
drunken drivers involved in serious accidents.
In a unanimous ruling, the court held that police cannot
require drivers involved in accidents with serious
injuries or fatalities to submit to blood or breath
tests without probable cause. Before Monday's ruling,
the "implied consent" statute allowed police to seek the
tests even when there was no indication the driver was
impaired or intoxicated.
ROCKY MOUNTAIN NEWS:
NOT A MORAL LAPSE
For all that's been written and said about addiction as
a medical disease, most people, including most
physicians, understand little about what draws people to
drugs and keeps them hooked, often despite severe
consequences and repeated attempts to quit.
A better understanding of the pull and tug of addiction
can help those who are hooked and those who want to get
the monkey off their backs for good.
The savings in life-years, quality of life and lost
income can be huge, not to mention the costs of
drug-instigated crime and medical care.
According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, $133
billion a year is spent just on treating the short- and
long-term medical complications of addiction. Among the
many health consequences of addictions are sudden
cardiac arrest, irreversible kidney and liver damage,
AIDS, fetal harm and many cancers, including cancers of
the lung, bladder, breast, pancreas, larynx, liver and
That it's possible to become free of addictions and
remain so is unquestioned.
SEEK TO TRANSFER STATE DRUG PROGRAM TO JUSTICE
The chairman of the House International Relations
Committee said the State Department's aviation program
for eradicating illicit drugs abroad has failed and
should be transferred to another federal agency.
In an Oct. 1 memo, Rep. Henry Hyde, R-Ill., said the
State Department has failed to adequately stop opium
production in Colombia, and therefore all authority,
budget and personnel of its "Air Wing" program should be
transferred to the Justice Department. Hyde sent the
memo to Rep. James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., chairman of
the House Judiciary Committee.
COURT WEIGHS WORKPLACE RIGHTS FOR EX-SUBSTANCE ABUSERS
The Supreme Court struggled Wednesday to sort out an
important Americans with Disabilities Act case brought
by an Arizona man who wanted his job back after being
terminated years earlier for alcohol and drug abuse.
Substance abuse itself is not a disability under the
law, but workplace discrimination because of past abuse
is covered. In Raytheon v. Hernandez, No. 02-749,
the company says it was justified in not rehiring Joel
Hernandez because of an across-the-board policy against
rehiring anyone who was once terminated for cause. The
Bush administration entered the case on the side of the
The case has "extraordinary implications," Raytheon
lawyer Carter Phillips of Sidley Austin Brown & Wood
told the Court, for "thousands of companies" with
similar no-rehire rules.
But much of the argument focused on procedural problems
and factual uncertainties about Hernandez's case, which
had been dismissed summarily by a district judge. The
9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reversed in a decision
written by Judge Stephen Reinhardt, finding that
Hernandez was entitled to a trial and had made a prima
facie case of disability discrimination.
The justices appeared troubled by the appeals ruling,
which assumed certain facts about the case that had
never been proved. Some justices appeared ready to
dismiss the case because of flaws in the lower court
SLATE: JUNKIE JUSTICE
is the sort of case the Warren Court lived to hear: An
old-fashioned sob story about a broken victim and the
soulless corporation that wouldn't cut him a break. On
one side, Joel Hernandez, recovering addict fighting for
his old job after he finds God and gets sober. On the
huge defense contractor, which—along with the federal
government—is defending its
no-second-chances-for-cokeheads policy. Hernandez is,
not to put too fine a point on it, screwed from the word
go. His case is being argued by his Phoenix trial
attorney, while Raytheon is represented by D.C.'s Carter
Phillips, one of those appellate Harlem Globetrotters
magnificent. Hernandez's brief in the case is, well, not
good. And Justices David Souter and Stephen Breyer—who
tend to side with the sad sack—both recluse themselves
for unexplained reasons.
You might think the Supreme Court would treat all these
imbalances and disparities with compassion: Put a wee
thumb on the scale for the little guy. But this is a
court of tough guys and just-the-facts. Unless the facts
are the problem.
STAMFORD ADVOCATE (CT): GOVERNORS GET SOBERING
NEWS ON NEW ENGLAND DRUG USE
Heroin demand in the region is so strong that
traffickers now skip their traditional delivery route
through New York City and head straight for New England.
Drug Enforcement Agency Administrator Karen Tandy
delivered that news Wednesday to five of the six New
England governors who met at Faneuil Hall to discuss the
region's drug problems, which have quietly worsened in
Outside the spotlight, dependence on illegal drugs in
New England has grown to be highest in the nation,
according to the U.S. Office of Drug Control Policy.
Heroin use, especially among young people, is of
particular concern, selling for as little as $4 per bag
and marketed in colorful logos to appeal to kids.
WHITE HOUSE DRUG CZAR RECOMMENDS DRUG TESTING IN
President Bush's drug czar told New England governors
Wednesday that drug testing in schools would be an
effective way to combat what is a growing problem of
drug use among young people, especially in the
The region's six governors and John Walters, director of
the Office of Drug Control Policy, met at Faneuil Hall
in an anti-drug summit focusing on New England's heroin
New England has more people ages 12 and over dependent
on illegal drugs than any other region of the nation,
according to Walters.
THE RECORDER (CA)
LATEST POT ARGUMENT MAY GO TO SEED
With little success to show for their efforts to get
federal courts to recognize medical marijuana, advocates
arrived at the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on
Tuesday hoping that a honed argument might finally score
them a win.
Their reception was lukewarm, however. The government's
lawyer was able to breeze through his presentation so
quickly that Judge Harry Pregerson spent some time
quizzing him about the ingredients in pigeon feed and a
recent newspaper article he'd read.
The plaintiffs, Angel McClary Raich and Diane Monson,
want an injunction to prevent the federal government
from confiscating a small number of marijuana plants
grown in their homes for medical use.
The case is the latest in a number of challenges to
federal drug policy under the Supreme Court's recent
Commerce Clause jurisprudence. But with the marijuana
grown and used at home exclusively by the patient, Raich
and Monson argue that this case is distinguishable from
others involving medical marijuana shops or collectives,
where money or services change hands.
NEW SCIENTIST (UK): FORTY-SECOND ECSTASY
TABLET TEST DEVELOPED
A new technique that rapidly analyses ecstasy tablets
could provide an early warning system for rogue pills
and also police help trace illicit manufacturers.
The method uses Raman spectroscopy to produce a
fingerprint for each ecstasy tablet. This reveals the
concentration of the active ingredient MDMA plus the
identity of any toxic contaminants.
STUDENT DRUG TESTING:
FROM: DAVID G. EVANS, ESQ. EXECUTIVE
DIRECTOR DRUG-FREE SCHOOLS COALITION 908-788-7077
One of the arguments
that opponents of student drug testing raise is that it
costs too much. This is not true. For the results
achieved, drug testing is surprisingly inexpensive. When
compared with athletic equipment it is estimated we
spend hundreds of dollars on equipment to protect a
football player. Drug testing is cost effective with the
average cost per student of $19 per year. The cost per
test (lab fee) ranges from $10 to $148.50. The mean cost
is $42 and the median is $21. Initial tests can cost
only a few dollars. Schools only need to test a few
students to get the desired effect. 1
States may have drug test purchase contracts that
schools could use. For example, in New Jersey there is a
state contract for criminal justice agencies that is
available to schools (contract #86602). Under the
contract a school can purchase test cups that conduct
the initial test for 3 or more drugs for $8.55 to $9.31
for each cup depending on which drugs they want to test
for. Alcohol tests run for about $1.80 and strips to
test for adulteration cost about 80 cents. Confirmation
of positives will be $15 per drug.
If a school tests 100 students the cost will be $855 to
$931. If they have tests positive for 5% of the students
the confirmation will be 5 x $15.00 = $75. There will be
some other minor costs for the adulteration tests at 80
cents each and mailing, etc.
100 alcohol tests will cost about $180
Thus a school can test 100 students for drugs and
alcohol for a little over $1,200
If you wish to verify this information you can call the
test manufacturer Varian, Inc. The person to speak to is
Alan Lubins at 732-236-5298 (cell)
1. United States Department of Education, Office of
Elementary and Secondary Education Safe and Drug-Free
Schools Program, Report of a Preliminary Study: Elements
of a Successful School-Based Student Drug Testing
Program, July 22, 2002, Prepared By: The Institute for
Behavior and Health, Inc., 6191 Executive Blvd.
Rockville, Maryland 20852, U.S. Dept. of Education Order
No. ED-01-PO-3886 Authors: Robert L. DuPont, M.D.,
Teresa G. Campbell, Ph.D., and Jacqueline J. Mazza.
MOMSTELL HEADLINE ISSUES