Tricks in treats
A growing number of Jamaican students are being exposed to drugs.

Dear Editor,

Imagine sending your child to school just for them to be drunk in class all day from eating alcohol-soaked gummies. How about seeing your child consume a cookie not knowing it is infused with ganja?

This is the dilemma our children are facing on a daily basis while at school. Food handler's-permit-holding parents disguising themselves as vendors are poisoning our children. The police are doing their best to clamp down on this illegal activity, but how can the public help?

On Sunday, November 14, 2022, an article published in the Jamaica Observer headlined 'Drug-dealing parents' highlighted that this once-dormant activity has resurfaced. These drug dealers have the audacity to claim that their dangerous and disgusting habit is as a result of a need for survival. They have no qualms about drugging another parent's child but do not want the same for theirs. How did we even get here, where our children have no hesitation in making these purchases? Are our children addicts or are they just curious and experimenting? We need to help our children.

The police have developed a Youth with Behavioural Issues in School programme, which is a step in the right direction. The National Council on Drug Abuse had a focus group of 160 students which informed them of the students' drugs of choice: molly, vaping, and edibles.

Some students get involved with these drugs because of problems at home. The police have provided counselling for them and their parents.

Students, you know what is happening with your friends. Speak out! Parents, pay close attention to your children. Provide an environment where they feel safe to talk to you. Take an interest in their well-being and progress at school. Look out for the children in your communities. It takes a village to raise a child.

Let's leave the trick and treating for Halloween.

Latoya Richards

lrichards19@stu.ncu.edu.jm

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