Researcher: Meth decline not linked to campaign

BILLINGS, MT (AP) - A new study says efforts to curb methamphetamine abuse through graphic advertisements aimed at youths have had no discernible affect.

Economics researcher D. Mark Anderson of the University of Washington says abuse of the drug already was on the decline prior to the 2005 launch of the high-profile Montana Meth Project.

The multimillion dollar campaign has since spread to seven other states - Arizona, Idaho, Illinois, Wyoming, Colorado, Hawaii and Georgia. It uses billboards and other advertisements to link meth abuse with teen prostitution, crime and death.

Montana Meth Project director Bill Slaughter says Anderson's study fails to reflect that the rate of meth decline accelerated after the campaign was launched.

The study appears in the September issue of the Journal of Health Economics.

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