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Letter to the editor: Public meth hotline makes community safer

When neighbors watch out for each other, they strengthen their communities.

One neighbor’s tip in an Encinitas neighborhood led to the arrest of someone dealing heroin and methamphetamine out of a home. Earlier this year, the neighbor called the Methamphetamine Strike Force Hotline at 1-877-NO-2METH (877-662-6284) over concerns about drug dealing in his neighborhood. The tip was sent to the Encinitas Sheriff’s Department, which launched an investigation that eventually gained a warrant to search the residence and led to an arrest.

Neighborhood safety is everyone’s responsibility. And that is one of the goals of National Night Out, held the first Tuesday of August and designed to heighten crime and drug prevention awareness, strengthen neighborhood spirit and police-community relations, and send a message to everyone that neighbors are watching out for each other to prevent crime.

Cooperative projects help identify and address problems associated with meth and other drug use in the community. Meth continues to be a big problem in San Diego County. It’s the primary drug of choice among arrestees and in adult drug treatment admissions in the public system, as well as a primary contributor to drug overdose deaths.

Families and communities suffer the consequences when loved ones use drugs. Domestic violence, for instance, has shown to be heavily affected by meth use. In 71 San Diego County domestic violence case reviews from 2006-2013, more than 35 percent of perpetrators had a history of meth use, as well as nearly 27 percent of intimate partner victims.

The Meth Hotline is free and available to anyone who wants to leave a tip about suspicious activity in their neighborhoods.

“The Meth Hotline exists to help neighbors pass on anonymous, confidential tips to law enforcement about meth problems, and to provide information about drug treatment and other available resources,” said Jerry Young, Meth Hotline supervisor. “Residents can either call 1-877-NO2METH or email at www.no2meth.org to pass on this kind of information that can get results. We were very pleased that a neighbor helped uncover a meth distribution system in Encinitas. We love it when neighbors, the Meth Hotline and law enforcement can team up to make neighborhoods safe.”

In addition, local programs such as Crime Free Multi-Housing allows the opportunity for rental property owners and managers to reduce the likelihood of crime in their communities. The program is a partnership among property owners, law enforcement and residents with a dedication to making a safer community and to combat crimes in multi-unit housing complexes. For details, visit the San Diego County Sheriff website at https://sdsheriff.net/cfmh.

-Submitted press release by San Dieguito Alliance for Drug Free Youth


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