In the past six months there hasn't been much good news in the war on drugs. Police agencies all over the Tri-state area have told The Herald-Mail that they don't have the resources to cope with rising drug abuse. Washington County Sheriff Charles Mades has requested more than 20 additional officers for jail duty, due to an influx of drug suspects. Now an annual survey of teen drug use shows that it's increasing among Washington County high school seniors. It's time to re-think the battle strategy in this war.
Drug use has increased despite a boost in penalties and prison construction, even though there's a ton of information available about drugs' adverse effects on the health of the user and any children they might have. Drug use also provides the payroll for an army of criminals involved in the manufacture, transport and sale of these illegal products. That is a consequence of their habit that users seldom see, and which law enforcement authorities might better use in an anti-drug education effort.