Published on:

Santa Cruz County Sees Devastating Impact of Meth Use on Families

The rapidly proliferating use of methamphetamines in Santa Cruz County is having a devastating impact on families in the county, according to a new report entitled “the Methamphetamine Snapshot.” The study, released on September 21, seems to indicate to Bill Manov, administrator of the Santa Cruz County Alcohol and Drug Program, that things are not headed in a positive direction. In Manov’s eyes, “we haven’t seen it peak yet,” a statement that is based on the fact that meth gained popularity in Santa Cruz County later than in the rest of the country, is cheap, and is in fairly high supply. In terms of methamphetamine’s effect on families, the sample sets used in the study provide grim indications of what will happen if meth use does, in fact, continue to rise. Approximately one-third of individuals currently enrolled in a Domestic Violence Batterers’ Program reported that they previously used meth, over 50 % of children enrolled in the Youth Services treatment program are admitted users, and close to half of the 362 minors involved in Family and Children Services with Santa Cruz County had parents with a history of proven or alleged methamphetamine use. Nearly 60 percent of the children in the latter study were under the age of 5.

In working with clients in Santa Cruz County, and surrounding counties, our San Jose and Monterey family lawyers are all too familiar with the drastic impact that methamphetamine abuse can have on family relationships. Hard drug abuse can tear families apart, whether the abuser is a parent or a child. An experienced family lawyer can be an invaluable resource for an individual trying to decide the best way to protect a child from the ravages of parental drug use. If you are aware of a situation in which a child is being abused or neglected by a drug-addicted parent, it may be possible for you to hire an attorney and have the issue addressed as a juvenile dependency case.