Meth use unfazed by ad campaign

By BEN HAVENS/Montana State News

Methamphetamine use has not significantly decreased since the implementation of the Montana Meth Project ads in 2005.

The graphic ads depict the adverse affects of meth use in an attempt to dissuade meth use, particularly among the younger demographics.

The Montana Meth Project, which began as a private organization but now operates using state government funds, reports that use of methamphetamine use has decreased among multiple demographics including teenagers since the ads syndication. However, causation is questionable.

Meth use had already been decreasing among these demographics prior to the ads.  Montana meth use was highest in 1999 at 13 percent%, which was 6 percent higher than the national average. Rates continued to lower to 12 percent in 2001, 9 percent in 2003, 8 percent  in 2005 when the ads first began, and then down to the national 6 percent  in 2007.  Although it didn’t show the largest decrease, 2007 did mark the year when Montana meth use declined to the national level.

Meth use in Wyoming surpassed Montana in 2002, and has remained consistently higher since the most recent 2009 data. Results are similar across different demographics.  Children below the age of 17, and adults above the age of 17, all showed roughly the same rates of decrease from 2005 to 2009 as they did in 1999 to 2004.

— Edited by Noah Bostrom

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