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Drug Summit in Springfield



The Federal Drug Summit is a new program from the Drug Enforcement Agency, or DEA.

The two-day event wraps up today.

The goal of the summit is to bring together community leaders to create a strategic plan for reducing drugs and drug crime in Springfield.

Two days of roundtable discussions are supposed to bring together a wide range of suggestions for reducing the availability of illegal drugs.

ASA Hutchison, DEA administrator told the roomful of community leaders Monday morning it was up to them to reduce drug abuse.

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Organizers expected 150 people to participate in the drug summit.

Springfield mayor tom Carlson says he hopes the summit will raise awareness because the drug problem in Springfield isn't highly visible.

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The biggest drug problem facing Springfield, according to the DEA is methamphetamine.

Hutichison gave drug summit participants a statistic to illustrate the scope of the problem.

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While it may sound like Springfield has a significant drug problem, there are many other communities around the country where drug use is more prevalent.

Hutchison explains why the DEA decided to come to Springfield.

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Springfield is the fourth city to serve as a pilot site for the drug summit.

Melissa Haddow says as head of the community partnership of the Ozarks she's delighted to have the drug summit in town.

She says Springfield has many resources to help fight drug use.

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As for measuring the success of the drug summit in Springfield'?

Hutchison says he hopes the community will meet the needs identified during the summit.

He says the goal is to come back in six months and see improvements in the community that will lead to a reduction in the availability of drugs.

He says he won't judge the outcome of the summit on the number of drug-related arrests made in the next year.