Georgia takes a big step toward protecting its children - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Georgia takes a big step toward protecting its children

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March 19, 2004

Albany- Methanphetamine is a popular, inexpensive, easily made and terribly addictive drug. It is also one the most dangerous. Joey Autrey, commander of Southwest Georgia Drug Task Force says "The dangers of course are from the drug itself, and from the process that makes the drug and that's where the biggest dangers are, where the children are at and those chemicals are around, plus there have been several instances where meth labs have actually exploded and caught the place on fire."

Investigators say they believe a methamphetamine explosion in Griffin yesterday may have caused the fire that killed three young boys and their babysitter. Today, the General Assembly said enough and passed a bill that would make child endangerment a felony.

One South Georgia mother, who prefers to remain anonymous, is recovering from her addiction to the drug. She says it's time for people to open their eyes to the hazards surrounding children and meth labs. She claims " I have been at places where children are running around where this is going on. What if it spilled over, I mean anything could happen at that time."

Dozens of children were burned or killed last year in meth-related accidents in Georgia. "When somebody gets to that point, they don't care about their family nothing," says the recovering addict . As for this mother who claims her child was never actually present during a methamphetamine cooking procedure, she can't make up for the times she missed with her daughter who is now three. " What makes it so bad is I can't go back and replace that time when I did. Go on and play cause mama wants to get high. Go watch a movie. Mama wants to get high. You can't replace that time."

Methamphetamine is easily made, especially in South Georgia, because the ingredients include common household products and anhydrous ammonia, a chemical farmers use as fertilizer.

Posted by jennifer.hulsey@walb.com at 6:41 PM.