The Meth Epidemic [home page]
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"Unnecessary Epidemic"
This is The Oregonian's award-winning 2004 investigative series that examined how and why meth spread eastward from California and Oregon beginning in the 1990s and reached the entire United States within roughly a decade. The Portland newspaper's full series is available online here and offers pictures and graphics on the meth super labs and the cook process, the rise and fall of meth's purity, the spread of meth nationwide, and more. The series was at the heart of the reporting partnership between FRONTLINE and The Oregonian for FRONTLINE's Feb. 2006 report, "The Meth Epidemic."

"Meth: America's Most Dangerous Drug"
Here is Newsweek's cover story that signaled to many meth's arrival as a national problem. According to writer David J. Jefferson, "the highly addictive stimulant is hooking more and more people across the socioeconomic spectrum: soccer moms in Illinois, computer geeks in Silicon Valley, factory workers in Georgia, gay professionals in New York." The article also has sidebar links to related audio, video, photos and other stories from the perspectives of both a DEA official and a meth dealer. (Aug. 8, 2005)

"Recipe for Disaster"
In this article, originally published in The Washington Post, freelance writer Thea Singer tells the personal story of how her younger sister, Candy, a children's defense lawyer, became addicted to meth. In just a few months, Candy quit her job, lost her apartment, began manufacturing meth in her mother's basement and stealing from neighbors' homes. She was arrested, sent to treatment and eventually kicked her addiction, but the process took years. (Jan. 15, 2006)

"My Addicted Son"
When David Sheff's eldest son Nick first tried crystal meth in between his senior year of high school and his freshman year of college, he claims it was like finding something he had been searching for "for his entire life." Since then, Nick has been in and out of treatment programs, run away, and nearly died from an overdose. In February 2005, when this article first appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Nick had been sober for 10 months, "but I have learned to check my optimism," writes his father, who writes candidly about his fears for Nick and his own sense of responsibility for his son's addiction. Other stories of families struggling with meth addiction are available on the Partnership for a Drug Free America site, which reprinted the story with permission.

"Mexicans take over drug trade to U.S."
The Christian Science Monitor's Danna Harman reports on how Mexican drug cartels have surged past their Columbian counterparts by cornering the more lucrative drug channels into the United States. (Aug. 16, 2005)

Government and Non-Governmental Support and Resources Sites

KCI - The Anti-Meth Site
This site, which was first launched by the Koch Crime Institute in Kansas, has evolved into an information clearinghouse and a community for methamphetamine users. In addition to a set of FAQs, links to news articles, and information on lab hazards and cleanup, it has an active message board and chat as well as a collection of letters from users, parents and loved ones.

Methamphetamine Fact Sheet
This page from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy offers a rundown of facts on methamphetamine, including a brief history, law enforcement successes, legislative efforts, and treatment.

Substance Abuse Treatment Facility Locator
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services provides this interactive map through its Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration to help you search for treatment facilities in your area. Just type in your address to locate facilities in a 1- to 100-mile radius. (Your information is confidential and not recorded on the site.)

National Institute on Drug Abuse
This site from the National Institute on Drug Abuse offers general information on meth as well as links to related issues such as teens and drugs and hospital trends.

Methamphetamine Effects
An information portal page from the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration with sections on meth "effects," "facts," "help" and "news." It also has useful links and DEA stats on drug arrests, emergency room mentions, lab cleanup and more.

Faces of Meth™
This is the official Web site for the Oregeon Multnomah County Sheriff's Office's educational project, "Faces of Meth," that presents "before" and "after" mug shots of methamphetamine addicts who repeatedly turned up in the system. The photographs appearing elsewhere on this Web site are from this project, organized by Deputy Bret King.

National Alliance for Drug Endangered Children
This organization is supported by the Department of Justice, the DEA and the Office of National Drug Control Policy. According to the Web site, the alliance "supports a nationwide network of professionals serving drug endangered children by providing referrals to experts, updated research on topics concerning drug endangered children, and best practice information."
Peter Staley, interviewed by FRONTLINE its "The Meth Epidemic" report, founded this site. The aim of the site is to offer easily comprehensible information on HIV drug treatment, as well as support forums and news links.

The Congressional Caucus to Fight and Control Methamphetamine
The 133-member bi-partisan congressional caucus seeks to stop meth abuse and production by "directing congressional attention to the growing meth epidemic." The caucus helped get the Combat Methamphetamine Epidemic Act passed in the House of Representatives. Included on this site are a list of the caucus's members, FAQs, news clippings, and an extensive list of links and resources.

National Association of Counties
NACO's Meth Action Clearinghouse provides information on meth-related federal and state legislation, articles and news releases, and extensive surveys on how the drug is affecting law enforcement and social services at the county level.


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posted feb. 14, 2006; updated may 16, 2011

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