Concern over increasing drug-related social problems among youths

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Chai (seated left) with his MAT members.

MIRI: Parents here have voiced their concern over the increasing number of drug-related social problems involving youths.

United People’s Party (UPP) Pujut branch chairman Bruce Chai said the concerns were brought to the attention during a ground visit by branch members last week as part of its Mobile Action Team (MAT) programme.

“We conducted MAT programme last week at two different locations: Boulevard Commercial Centre and Krokop 9.

“Most of the issues that were brought to our attention concerned the increasing number of drug-related social problems in the city among teenagers and those in their early 20s,” he told The Borneo Post yesterday.

Chai added that drugs and gambling activities are now the biggest social concerns among parents here.

Being a father of children between the ages of 18 and 22, he said he too shared the same concern.

Based on newspaper reports since last year until June this year, Chai said he observed that no fewer than 20 drug-related arrests have been made by police in the city.

He also praised the police for giving their best in their continuous efforts in combating drug-related cases.

To better aid the fight against drugs, Chai suggested that more random drug tests be conducted at schools as well as government departments and agencies, and the private sector.

“Perhaps, we can adopt what has been implemented by some of the oil and gas companies, where they insert an anti-drug clause into their employees’ contract, which allows the employer to conduct drug tests on their employee.

“If the drug test shows a positive result, the employer has the right to terminate the particular employee.”

He said the tests are actually an important preventive measure to ensure the people, particularly students, do not dabble in drugs.

“At this point, it is important for parents to monitor their childrens behaviour and social activities.

‘Having a drug-addicted child is not a proud matter for any family. However, keeping the matter under the carpet is worse, and parents must instead quickly send their children for rehabilitation.”

Chai said UPP Pujut branch can assist parents whose children have problems with drugs by providing counseling.

“The doors of the party branch is always open and do not hesitate to visit us if you need advice or even assistance in getting drug rehabilitation treatment.”