I had a distinct pleasure Wednesday to have as a radio guest on Speak Your Piece, Bucks County District Attorney Matt Weintraub. He is a strong DA who balances his commitment to law enforcement with compassion for the victims. He is at the forefront of the opioid crisis and takes a hands-on approach as he warns of the dangerous influx of drugs into our suburban county and the arrests of the traffickers.
Are the efforts we have seen in Bucks working? In some areas, yes, but the DA sadly reported that drug overdose deaths increased, nearly doubled, between 2016 and 2017 – considering all of the attention on health and recovery workers, police and educators have given to the drug problem.
But that is where education comes in – education in schools as well as in many public forums. Clearly, Weintraub is an activist DA who sends his staff (and himself) into the schools and public arena to alert students, families, every one of the ongoing drug crisis, especially the danger of hardcore drugs, such as heroin.
Before coming to WBCB, the DA spoke to 10th graders at Pennsbury H.S. It is the classroom where he believes teens can be alerted to the insidious nature of drug dealers, or “friends,” distributing hardcore drugs and pills in the “schoolyard.”
He also talked about a new drug, but a familiar “old” drug called crystal meth, or methamphetamine, that is being peddled in Bucks County. According to Weintraub, the illicit drug is manufactured in Mexico and comes in through California and reaches all areas, including ours. It is cheap and dangerous!
Weintraub invited our listeners to attend an important forum upcoming on Sat., April 28 at the Newtown Athletic Club (NAC) between noon and 4 p.m. Professional health workers, law enforcement, and crisis managers will be among the many participants. Weintraub encouraged families who may not have a drug issue in their home to also come with their children to learn about the impact the drug/opioid crisis continues to have on our youth, our neighbors, and the many resources for help available in Bucks County.
This continuing crisis can be abated and eventually eliminated, but it takes more than a village. It takes a multi-faceted approach that includes money and commitment, law enforcement and the caring people who will be at the Newtown event, Saturday.
And my thanks to DA Weintraub for his dedication. -PW