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GetSmart About Drugs - A DEA Resource for Parents

News Release
June 12, 2003

One Hundred Fifty Attend Ecstasy and Predatory Drug Conference

photo - Operation X-Out conference participants
Ian Wong, Massachusetts Department of Public Health, DEA Special Agent Tina Murphy, John Mendelsohn, MD and Robert Robinson, PHD after participating in an OPERATION X-OUT type conference held in Springfield Massachusetts.

Springfield, MA….One hundred fifty educators, coaches, police officers and other professionals attended the DEA sponsored ecstasy and predatory drug conference.

Mark R. Trouville, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration in New England announced today the successful Ecstasy and predatory drug conference held at the Sheraton Hotel in Springfield, Massachusetts. This conference is modeled after DEA Operation X-Out.

This conference was attended by over one hundred and fifty people who listened to speakers who touched on all areas of predatory drugs. DEA S/A Tina Murphy touched on the scourge of Ecstasy and how Ecstasy and other predatory drugs are an enforcement priority of the DEA and discussed what DEA is doing to combat these drugs. Dr. John Mendelsohn discussed Ecstasy, GHB, Rohypnol and Ketamine and the type of emergency room situations that Dr. Mendelsohn deals with on a regular basis because of these drugs. In the doctors experience it was not uncommon for women to come into the hospital not remembering if they had been sexually assaulted. This memory loss was a direct result of predatory drugs. Dr. Robert Robinson touched on family dynamics, which sometimes push teens towards the use of these predatory drugs. Dr. Robinson talked about how parental involvement in the lives of these teens can help prevent the use of these drugs. The establishment of rules, which helped teens with boundaries, was also discussed. Ian Wong, Massachusetts Department of Public Health, who welcomed the participants with his opening remarks, reminded the participants at the end of the conference to go forward and spread the message of the dangers of predatory drugs.

Each speaker took numerous questions from the audience and a dialogue was soon established. Many in the audience thanked the speakers for this opportunity to talk about these serious issues and hoped that conferences like this one continued. DEA and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health will be following up with the attendees to examine how programs can be started at area colleges and in their communities.

The conference was conducted by members of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, New England Field Division, The Massachusetts Department of Public Health, and Dr. John Mendelsohn and Dr. Robert Robinson.

Press Contact S/A Anthony Pettigrew, 617-557-2138.

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