WHEREAS, methamphetamine use results in a serious array of psychological problems, including depression impaired thinking, psychotic and violent behavior, paranoia and homicidal and suicidal thoughts; and
WHEREAS, methamphetamine use leads to serious chronic health problems, which include illnesses brought on by malnourishment, complications in pregnancies resulting in harm to the newborn and brain damage similar to that caused by stroke or epilepsy; and
WHEREAS, methamphetamine use results in impaired work, social and family relationships leading to loss of gainful employment, physical, emotional and economic abandonment of spouses and children and estrangement from family and loved ones; and
WHEREAS, methamphetamine use produces a rapid increase in tolerance and thus an accelerated progression to intense addiction and psychological dependence, which in turn lead to withdrawal symptoms lasting up to two weeks; and
WHEREAS, methamphetamine use is adversely affecting the well-being and quality of life of a growing number of Missouri citizens, as witnessed by the increase of Department of Health treatment admissions from 716 in 1995 to 3,607 in 2003 with 64% of these treatment admissions reporting their first use of methamphetamine beginning at age 21 or younger and with 48.5% of referrals for treatment coming from the criminal justice system; and
WHEREAS, effective community-based treatment is recognized as an essential component of any coordinated multi-agency and multi-disciplinary effort to reduce the incidence of substance abuse; nevertheless, Missouri communities are challenged with obstacles to treatment of methamphetamine users due to limits on funding, a lag in research on treatment methodologies and a lack of training opportunities for medical and mental health staff to assist them in more effectively diagnosing and delivering effective care of methamphetamine abuse; and
WHEREAS, working together in collaboration, law enforcement, prosecution, clandestine lab clean up, social services, education and treatment agencies can improve the lives of all Missourians.
NOW, THEREFORE, I, BOB HOLDEN, GOVERNOR OF THE STATE OF MISSOURI, by virtue of the authority vested in me by the Constitution and Statutes of the State of Missouri, do hereby declare and establish a Missouri Methamphetamine Treatment Task Force consisting of representatives from local treatment agencies and organizations and one or more representatives from the Missouri Department of Mental Health, the Missouri Department of N Corrections, the Missouri Department of Social Services and the Missouri Department of Public Safety.
The primary goals of the Treatment Task Force shall be:
- to promote research into best practice treatment approaches; and
- to increase the availability of training for treatment providers; and
- to support strategies to provide greater access to treatment services for those who need and seek treatment in their local communities.
I encourage all citizens, agencies and organizations to support the Missouri Methamphetamine Treatment Task Force as it pursues these goals.
IN WITNESS WHEREOF, I have hereunto set my hand and caused to be affixed the Great Seal of the State of Missouri, in the City of Jefferson, on this 27 th day of January, 2004.
[Bob Holden's signature]
[Matt Blunt's signature]
SECRETARY OF STATE