Editorial: Drugs don't discriminate

WHILE it may be easy for some people to deny a drug problem if it doesn't relate to someone they know or love, the fact remains that drugs are a problem that impact an entire community.

Just because you may not know anyone with an addiction, that doesn't mean there isn't a problem which can have far-reaching implications. A recent police operation across NSW identified alarming statistics where one in 25 drivers were caught with drugs in their system. That alone creates a risk for every single person on the road.

It is also commonly known that a drug addicted person will resort to theft - which includes break-ins, car thefts and muggings - to fund their habit. What is more frightening is that this behaviour is not discerning and could happen to anyone. Dylan, the subject of our front page story today, admitted that this was how he regularly funded his ice habit and his family members were often a target.

Meanwhile, ice has been identified by healthcare workers, such as those at the rehabilitation centre at Robertson, Triple Care Farm, as resulting in a dramatic increase in psychotic illnesses. In addition

young people who are using ice are 80 per cent more likely to commit suicide. With this in mind it is perhaps essential that we all recognise drug addiction is a problem in society and the Highlands is not immune to its impact. Police have identified methamphetamine and cannabis as the biggest concern in the Southern Highlands.

These are drugs that don't discriminate and have the potential to affect people of all ages and from all walks of life.

It is time for us all to be aware of the issues that are in our backyard, maybe even our homes. To learn more about the growing ice epidemic in rural communities go to http://www.southernhighlandnews.com.au/news/breaking-the-ice/

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