New York State Senator Jack M. Martins recently met with a prescription drug task force to be briefed on the abuse of prescription drugs as part of Red Ribbon Week.
Senator Martins spoke to the task force about ways to combat the abuse of prescription drugs, specifically how the issue affects young people. While many residents depend on doctor-prescribed medication, there is a danger in taking drugs that aren’t prescribed
Each day, approximately, 2,500 teens use prescription drugs to get high for the first time according to the Partnership for a Drug Free America. Abuse of prescription drugs can also lead to street drugs.
Recently, Senator Martins held a “Shed the Meds” program by which residents could bring in their unwanted prescription drugs. Police officers then dispose of the drugs in an environmentally safe way.
“The abuse of prescription drugs is something we should all be aware of. I’ll do whatever I can to make certain our young people of aware of the dangers. There are organizations and schools that do a great job in raising awareness but we have to continue to be vigilant. I will also work with my colleagues in the Senate to explore ways we can discourage drug abuse,” Senator Martins said. “This is an issue that is extremely important since drug abuse can lead to the senseless loss of lives.”
This past legislative session, Senator Martins was successful in getting a bill passed in the Senate that increases penalties for selling drugs to minors under the age of 14 to a class A-II felony.