Local Organizations Form Meth Task Force

May 5, 2006

Recently, Right Choices for Youth joined together with the San Angelo Police Department and the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council for the Concho Valley to create the Meth Task Force in order to combat the serious issue of methamphetamine use in our schools and community.

"In all my years in law enforcement Ive never seen a greater threat to our community than methamphetamine. It seems like meth is everywhere and it affects people from all walks of life. It robs our community of its health, prosperity, quality of life and, most importantly, our future. Though drug arrests are up, so is the use of methamphetamine. Yet, as discouraging as all this may sound, I believe there is hope. But it's going to take a community-wide effort to make a positive and lasting impact on this insidious epidemic," stated Police Chief Tim Vasquez.

The Meth Task Force came together to expose the shocking effects of methamphetamine and to work toward a solution to protect the citizens of San Angelo and the surrounding areas from this horrific drug. Their primary goals are to:

  1. Increase awareness about meth use in the community.
  2. Provide meth prevention and awareness education.
  3. Provide support and assistance for those seeking treatment.
  4. Make every effort to decrease meth use in our community.

Mayor Lown proclaimed May as Meth Awareness Month at the City Council meeting on Tuesday, April 18, 2006 at 10:00 am.

The high point of the Meth Task Force's efforts will take place on Tuesday, May 9, 2006. The group is bringing motivational speaker and recovering meth addict, David Parnell, to speak to area ninth graders about the dangers of methamphetamine. Lake View ninth graders will be bused over to the San Angelo City Auditorium for a presentation at 9:30 am. Students from Wall, Water Valley, Grape Creek, Christoval and local private schools will join them to hear Parnell's life story of his struggle with methamphetamine. At 1:00 pm, ninth graders from the Central Freshmen Campus will walk over to the City Auditorium, escorted by San Angelo police officers, to hear Parnell's presentation. Parnell began using drugs at the age of thirteen and, after a life-changing event, has since devoted his time and energy to fighting methamphetamine.

That evening a presentation will be given by Chief Vasquez in which he will address the methamphetamine problem in our community, followed by a panel discussion. Panel participants will include Glenn McFerren, M.D., physician at Shannon Behavioral Health, Eric Sanchez, Director of the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Council for the Concho Valley, Judge Pamala Talley, and David Parnell, recovering meth addict and motivational speaker. For more information about the events scheduled for May, please contact 481-6170.