Hamblen County, Tennessee is seeing an issue with meth abuse. The director of Hamblen County Substance Abuse Coalition, Paul Hyde, spoke publicly on the crisis on Wednesday.
He talked about how the coalition has been formed to extend a hand to those struggling with drug addiction in their area.
They will provide prevention and education services for their citizens.
Hyde has pointed out the fact that in their county, studies have shown that 1 in 4 households are effected by either drug or alcohol addiction.
He has been working with the HCSAC for 9 years. Since then, the “drug of choice” in their area has been meth. It is more recent that opiates have become more of a problem.
The government has taken action on restricting access for locals to buy materials for making their own meth.
“We have made great strides in Hamblen County and across the State of Tennessee and the opiate problem has drastically reduced,” said Hyde.
Since opiates have been more controlled in the area, meth abuse has risen once again. However, the meth was imported this time around.
Officials have found that the substance has come from Mexican drug cartels and they’re using Atlanta is a distribution epicenter.
According to Hyde, within the past couple years, 98% of drug cases revolved around opiates. More recently, meth is becoming a problem once again.
He also mentioned that they not only offer education and prevention at the HCSAC but they also give treatment for those willing to receive it.
They are making efforts to add a faith-based rehabilitation center in Morristown.
“It is a huge need.” Hyde said. “We are so close to getting it done.”
The HCSAC can be reached at 423-748-7494 for those looking for assistance.