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Thursday, February 13, 2014

Criminal Justice Quote: Long Island's Heroin Epidemic

…..Heroin use has exploded in what is being described as an epidemic on New York's Long Island, where addiction counselors are seeing users as young as 12--many from middle-class suburban families. Several factors have contributed to this "perfect storm" of addiction according to experts--among them, proximity to major airports and transportation centers, and a statewide crackdown on prescription painkillers, that has the unintended effect of pushing more kids to cheaper and more accessible heroin.

     The trend appears to be national. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says U.S. drug poisoning deaths involving heroin went up 45 percent from 2006 to 2010. And the Drug Enforcement Administration says the amount of heroin seized each year in the southwest U.S. border increased 232 percent from 2008 to 2012.

     And the trend is bad for younger users. Among four age groups, "drug poisoning deaths involving heroin" increased only for the youngest group, ages 15 to 24, from 2008 to 2010. For all the other age groups, the number of deaths was steady or went down, the CDC says….

Ronni Berke and Poppy Harlow, "One Snapshot in a Tragic National Picture: Long Island Sees Exploding Heroin Use," CNN, February 8, 2014 

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