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Teen Heroin Addiction

42 Students in a Single Washington High School Are Addicted to Heroin

Police in Stanwood Washington say that heroin is now local teens’ drug of choice.

Stanwood Washington, a quiet suburb of Seattle, wasn’t the kind of place that parents thought they had to worry about hard drugs – now they know better. According to the Snohomish County Division of Chemical Dependency, an astounding 42 students at Stanwood High School are currently receiving heroin addiction treatment.

An emergency meeting organized on Monday brought concerned parents and others in the community to gather and discuss the scope of the problem, and to seek solutions. Those at the meeting learned that for a high school kid in Stanwood, heroin is easier to get than alcohol or cigarettes, and when a bag of the drug sells for only $5, the price tag is no obstacle to a seductive and potent high.

Stanwood police Sgt. Barry Ruchty commented on the severity of the situation, saying that heroin has become the drug of choice for the region’s teens, saying, “It’s not alcohol. It’s not marijuana. Kids are going straight to heroin – the down and dirty silent killer.”

Police are asking parents and others in the community for assistance in fighting the drug scourge. Prevention experts with the county will be available over the next months to work with local parents and parents are being urged to talk to their children about drugs.

Experts urge parents to speak honestly, saying that we may have created the problem in part because of our failure to teach teens about the real and differing dangers of various drugs, that heroin is not the same as marijuana, for example. Marsha Rosenbaum, a drug policy expert out of San Francisco commented on the need for truth, saying, “When we talk about other drugs like heroin, which really are addictive, the kids think, you know, we've heard that message before and didn't turn out to be real. So they discard the message and are willing to try drugs that are really dangerous."

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