Missouri Senator Seeks $15 Million Increase for Meth Treatment

MARCH 29, 2006 - Posted at 3:19 p.m. CST

WASHINGTON - U.S. Senators Jim Talent (R-Missouri) and Dick Durbin (D-Illinois) are seeking a $15 million increase for family-based treatment centers that help treat meth addicts.  Talent and Durbin sent a letter this week to senators in both parties seeking support for the funding.  They hope to boost funding from $10 million to $25 million through family-based treatment programs administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration.

"Increasing meth treatment funding is critical to fighting the meth epidemic in our neighborhoods," said Talent.  "Treating meth addiction is much more complex than other drug treatments.  There is no methadone to help meth addicts.  And in too many cases, our health workers are not only treating meth addicts, but the kids who were exposed to this deadly drug and the chemicals used to make it.  We need to provide additional funding for family-based treatment to help those who want help and for the children who have been exposed to meth."

Approximately 16,000 children in the U.S. were either present at lab seizures or lived where meth was being made between 2000 and 2003.  In Missouri, 31 percent of children in the social services system are there because of a parents' drug offense.