This is dedicated to Travis Holappa who was kidnapped, tortured and murdered on July 25, 2004 in Northern Minnesota. This was all due to meth. I am Travis' mother and I wish to make this devastation turn into a better thing by educating and exposing the truth about meth, the dangers, and the deadly consequences it brings about to individuals and communities.

My Photo
Location: Colorado, United States

I want to do what I can to educate people about what is going on around the world with the meth problem. I want people to know about it BEFORE they even get the idea to want to try it. It is a dangerous drug and will ruin your life as well as all those who love you. I am on a mission on behalf of my only son, Travis.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Court to serve addicted parents (Minnesota)

New approach seeks to preserve custody
Pioneer Press
Children's advocates in Dakota County are praising efforts to launch a new court for parents whose drug addictions have put them in danger of losing their custody rights.

Aimed at users of methamphetamines and other drugs, the court will focus on enrolling troubled moms and dads into treatment programs as a step toward reuniting them with their children.

"I'm very excited about it," said Judy Peterson, manager of the county's guardian ad litem program, which provides courtroom advocates for children. "Generally, the kids are best served by being with their own families."

County officials believe the Family Dependency Treatment Court would be the first of its kind in the five-state area. It may be ready as soon as July, and participation would be voluntary, officials said.

Drug offenders would meet every two weeks with a judge, public defender, prosecutor, social worker and children's advocate to review their cases and determine if they have kept up with appropriate chemical dependency services.

Once they are on a stable treatment schedule, hearings would become monthly.

That system is expected to provide more rewards and supervision for parents than traditional child-protection cases, where hearings are held every 90 days. It also allows the courts to impose intermediate sanctions, such as electronic home monitoring, when an offender begins to slip up.

"Obviously, there's an incentive to get their kids back, but it's going to be a pretty rigorous program," said Judge Ed Lynch, who will preside over the cases. "It will be interesting to see how many (parents) are willing to make that commitment."

Traditional child-protection cases pose a challenge for methamphetamine abusers, who may need extra help getting organized, enrolling in treatment services and finding appropriate transportation and health insurance, according to county officials. That's because meth is considered a tougher addiction to buck than many others.

Meth also may have a more devastating effect on home life. In the last few months of 2004, Dakota County social service workers noticed an uptick in the number of kids taken from their parents and placed in foster care. Many of those kids were not yet 5 years old.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Finally, you've placed a positive and true article about meth addicts. Most meth addicts are no different from the addicts of any other drug. Although, it is true that drug use by parents can possiblly be dangerous for kids,it is still often times better that the kids stay with their parents rather than go into foster care or to a relative that really can not afford the money or time another child in their home requires. I know, because I used to work at DHS. Meth addicts have been given a reputation they most often do not deserve. It seems that the media wants to portray all meth addicts as violent and crazed. That is not always (or even often) true.

Sunday, April 16, 2006 5:49:00 PM  

Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

Links to this post:

Create a Link

<< Home