Top Local Drug Threat
Illicit fentanyl and fake prescription pills are a continued concern for the Kansas City region. Overdose deaths caused by fentanyl poisonings are rising, which has led to the increase of unexpected loss and grief among families in the Kansas City community. Overall, both the states of Missouri and Kansas have seen an upward trend in drug-related overdose deaths.
Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services reported over 2,000 drug-related overdose deaths occurred in the state in 2021. Around 70% of these deaths were caused by synthetic opioids (non-heroin opioids according to the graph) like illicit fentanyl.
According to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, the state reported over 600 drug-related overdose deaths in 2021 (yellow). Around half of the drug-related overdose deaths that occurred were related to synthetic opioids like illicit fentanyl (blue). Furthermore, the rate of drug overdose deaths in the state of Kansas almost tripled within the last year few years.
DEA Kansas City District Office is pleased to have Operation Engage to help combat the impact of illicit fentanyl and the toll it has taken on the Kansas City community. DEA will take this opportunity to educate and engage community members, health departments, schools, businesses, healthcare professionals, and policy makers to advocate for sustainable drug prevention initiatives and decrease the number of fentanyl poisonings in the community.
More Illicit Fentanyl Information
Learn more about fentanyl and fake pills that are affecting young adults and youth. The One Pill Can Kill website can provide facts for families wanting to learn more about the dangers of fake pills and fentanyl.
Johnson County Mental Health: provides resources and treatment options for those seeking assistance with substance misuse and counseling. 24/7 Crisis Hotline is 913-268-0156
Tri-County Mental Health Services: gives mental health and substance misuse resources and treatment options for those in Clay, Platte, and Ray County.
First Call: First Call provides help for individuals and families impacted by addiction and alcohol abuse. 24/7 Crisis Hotline 816-361-5900
FindTreatment.gov to search for general drug treatment facilities in your area. On this site, you can find facilities that offer various payment options (including free and no-cost care), youth treatment facilities, special programs for Veterans, plus more.
Otherwise, enter your zip code below to find substance abuse treatment facilities in your area.
One Pill Can Kill: DEA-led campaign that provides awareness of the increasing fentanyl related overdose deaths we are seeing nationwide. Fentanyl and opioids are affecting local youth. One Pill Can Kill website can provide facts for families wanting to learn more about the dangers of counterfeit pills and fentanyl.
DCCCA: Developing Caring Communities Committed to Action (DCCCA) provides social and community services that improve the safety, health, and well-being of those we serve. Through Behavioral Health, Prevention, Traffic Safety, Family Preservation, Foster Care, Quality Improvement, and other programs, DCCCA continues to honor its commitment to the community by providing valuable human services that help enrich and improve the quality of life for both adults and children.
Parent UP KC: Parent UP KC is local resource that gives parents information about drugs use among youth. It has great tools for parents and talking points for when you are ready to talk to kids about drugs.
Get Smart About Drugs: This is a resource for parents, educators and caregivers. This website also provides a range of DEA publications, available in both English and Spanish.
SAMHSA: “Talk. They Hear You.” is a free mobile app that helps you prepare for one of the most important conversations you may ever have with your children about underage drinking and drug use. The app provides parents and caregivers of children and teens ages 9 to 15 with the tools and information they need to start talking with their children early about the dangers of alcohol and drugs.
For more info: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JL2XMiOO0Fg
Hidden in Plain View: Visit this interactive, virtual bedroom. Can you see the signs of drug use? http://hipv.addictionisreal.org/ Addiction is Real offers a parent toolkit for how to start a conversation about substance use with your children.
Dead on Arrival: Counterfeit pills with fentanyl are deadly. This film by VOID (Victims of Illicit Drugs) is an eye-opening story from the families who have lost a loved one. There versions in both English and Spanish.
Operation Prevention: The DEA and Discovery Education have created Operation Prevention to provide communities with proactive digital tools to raise awareness about the dangers of substance misuse. This resource is free and is available in English and Spanish for students in grades 3-12, plus additional resources designed for educators, families, and professionals.
Campus Drug Prevention: The DEA provides institutions of higher education and their communities with this resource to prevent drug misuse among college students.
Cooper Davis Memorial Foundation: ("Keepin' Clean for Coop): Keepin’ Clean For Coop shares the story of one teen from Shawnee, Kansas who took half of a fake pill laced with fentanyl and didn’t make it. The website also shares fentanyl related resources and updates on events occurring in the Kanas City Metro region.
Just Think Twice: Looking for prevention resources specifically for young people? Go to the teen-focused site Just Think Twice. Here, youth will be able to get facts about drug use and learn ways to live a drug-free life.
NIDA for Teens: This website provides helpful drug facts as well as games and activities teens can do to learn more about the dangers of drugs.
Opioid Basics: Center for Disease Control offers more information about opioids and the different types there are out there that can cause harm and addiction.
Date: March 20-26, 2023
March 20-26th is National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week, which allows community members to connect to youth to provide resources for positive mental health, as well as facts about drugs, alcohol, and related health topics. Anyone can join. All you have to do is plan your event to bring together educators, healthcare providers, and community partners to address youth drug and alcohol use in communities. Learn more about National Drug and Alcohol Facts Week by going to nida.nih.gov!
Date: April 22, 2023
Take Back Day is coming up. If you have unused prescription drugs that need to be disposed, take them to your local law enforcement agency on April 22nd to be disposed of safely.
Winners of the 2022 Reel Prevention PSA Competition
Connect With Us!
Sign up for email updates about Kansas City's Operation Engage Initiative.
Stay up to date with the Operation Engage initiative in Kansas City by following the DEA St. Louis Twitter account @DEAKansasCity and the hashtag: #OpEngageKC
Please DO NOT submit tips using the feedback form on this page.
Use the official tips page (https://www.dea.gov/submit-tip) to report what appears to you as a possible violation of controlled substances laws and regulations.
Tips submitted to the feedback form below WILL NOT be addressed.
DEA. 2 March, 2022. Operation Engage Kansas City. Retrieved from https://www.dea.gov/engage/operation-engage-kansascity on 24 March, 2023
DEA. "Operation Engage Kansas City."Drug Enforcement Agency, 2 March, 2022, https://www.dea.gov/engage/operation-engage-kansascity Accessed 24 March, 2023.
DEA. . Drug Enforcement Agency on DEA website. https://www.dea.gov/engage/operation-engage-kansascity. 2 March, 2022. Accessed 24 March, 2023.