Friday, May 17, 2013

Iowa City Top Supplier of Synthetic Drugs to Teens in Eastern Iowa

Synthetic drugs are all over the news these days, and for good reason. It's easy to buy them and they're mostly illegal. A group called Iowans Against Synthetics has recently emerged to warn people against the hazards of synthetic drugs. I've unfortunately missed their April and May meetings -- both times due to last minute family issues. Their next meeting is scheduled for 6:00 PM on Thursday, June 27, 2013, at the Coralville Public Library. I'm hopeful that I will make it, but I'm hesitant to commit with my poor attendance record!

The Gazette posted an article about the sad state of Iowa City with regards to synthetic drugs. Sadly, we are becoming the top supplier of synthetic drugs to teens from all across Eastern Iowa, according to the local police. The police note in the article that juveniles from all over Eastern Iowa are traveling to local businesses with the specific intent to buy synthetic drugs. Iowans Against Synthetics protested the Den last month, but I know of at least one other business that actively sells these drugs and their business is open 24 hours daily.

The Gazette notes that kids as young as 13 are getting caught after curfew for being downtown in the middle of the night purchasing these drugs. According to MECCA, more than 4% of adolescents they have surveyed this year have used synthetic drugs, compared to 1% back in 2011 and 2012.

Synthetic drug users have been hospitalized for hallucinations and delusions, as well as suicidal ideation and aggressive behaviors. I've seen guys suffering long-term gastro-intestinal ailments and disruptive sleep patterns because of this stuff. And MECCA officials reports in this article reports of permanent facial tics in users. My understanding is that you cannot test for most of these drugs at this time, which makes it more appealing to those who seek to avoid drug tests for more traditional drugs. And they're not illegal for anyone to purchase -- including kids.

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