ECTOR COUNTY, TX (KWES) - To start a dialogue on the methamphetamine issue here locally, some groups planned an epi workshop. It's a seminar that will cover the issue many wanted to talk about.
"It is definitely a pervasive issue; the data doesn't lie. We have some of the highest meth users per capita in the state of Texas here in Ector County," said Kevin Thompson, Regional Evaluator for the Region 9 Prevention Resource Center.
The methamphetamine problem in the Permian Basin more specifically Thompson, trying to figure out an answer.
"We're still seeing a significant number of individuals arrested and seized for the drug. We need to figure out why that's the case," said Thompson.
Thompson said in 2015, 30 pounds' meth were seized just in Ector County and the state health department showed screening and treatment for amphetamines were up 25% in Region 9 which is made up of Ector and surrounding counties.
"The second closest is alcohol and you would imagine that alcohol screens would be much higher because its legal for people of age to drink but actually amphetamines are actually higher than alcohol," said Thompson.
Thompson believes location, the economy, and the number of people play a role in meth issue especially since it's a drug he says is hard to get a hold of.
"When you're talking about methamphetamines there's usually precursors to choosing methamphetamines as your drug. It's usually not your first drug of choice," said Thompson.
Now the resource center and Permian Basin Regional Council on Alcohol and Drug Abuse is hosting a seminar next month with the hopes of educating the community and finding a solution together.
"We'll try to culminate all of our past epi work groups to see what action plans need to happen. Whether that's legislative action, whatever that is it will be environmental. The environment hopefully will be impacted in a positive way to help combat this particular issue," said Thompson.
If you want to join in on the discussion, the epi work group is being held at the Region 18 Education Center next to the Midland International Air & Spaceport on August 25th, from 1 p.m.-4 p.m.
Click to RSVP: https://www.reg9prc.org/