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.

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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.

Monday, May 01, 2006

Criteria for removing children from meth-addicted parents to change in 2007 (Washington)


It's a run-of-the-mill day when a doctor or neighbor tells Mike Heard that a North Olympic Peninsula resident is addicted to meth, and that the addict, often a single mom, has children.

But it takes more than being hooked on methamphetamine -- a powerful, hard-to-kick stimulant -- for authorities take your children away and put them into foster care, said Heard, regional administrator for state Children and Family Services for Port Angeles, Port Townsend, Sequim and Forks.

Children are removed only if meth use or any drug use, for that matter, leads to ``imminent danger'' to the child, Heard said.

That's what Children and Family Services has to prove in court to get a child put into foster care, he said.

So a parent can do meth or any other drugs as long as it doesn't hurt the child.

``Meth use alone is not abuse or neglect to a child,'' Heard said.

``As of today, substance abuse is in and of itself not abuse to a child.''

Criteria to change next year

That will change in January 2007, when the standard is upgraded to drug use or any behavior that leads to ``chronic neglect'' under legislation that was passed in 2005.

For now, Heard's office constantly gets calls from people reporting a parent is doing meth.

But because those who are addicted don't eat and also sleep long periods of time, neglect is often the biggest factor in the state separating a child from his or her meth-addicted parent.

A child's world is small, but when that world is torn apart by meth use, leaving it can be a good thing -- and children know it.

``We kind of liken it to a war zone we are pulling kids out of,'' said Maureen Martin, the agency's Port Angeles office supervisor.

``Getting them cleaned up and in a stable environment works wonders.

``A lot of them are actually relieved. More times than not, they are not tearful about leaving their parents at all.''


Anonymous Amy said...

I think just using meth or letting people live in your home that use meth should be enough to charge someone with neglect or endangerment. There is not one case where meth use has not lead to something bad - physically or mentally happening to a child in that environment. It's awful those babies can't be saved before it happens instead of someone looking at a tombstone or a 12-year-old addict and saying "someone should have done something".

Thursday, June 29, 2006 1:37:00 PM  

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