While fentanyl and fentanyl overdose deaths are dominating headlines, "meth is still king." Meth is still king when it comes to the threats facing Montanans.

That's how Amy Rue with the Montana Meth Project summed up the words shared by Montana's Attorney General Austin Knudsen (R-MT) at an event inside Montana's capitol Monday morning.

The Montana Meth Project launched their "Paint the State" event with AG Knudsen and Montana Governor Greg Gianforte (R-MT). The program is designed to spotlight the dangers of meth to a new generation of Montanans, similar to the "Not Even Once" campaign from the early 2000s.

Amy Rue: What we see in Montana now is full cartel activity. The meth in Montana now is the highest purity, the highest availability, and the lowest cost we've seen in 17 years. So it's really that important that we remain vigilant, that we continue these outreach initiatives with young people. Another generation needs to learn this not even once message.

Rue says the Montana Meth Project hopes to use similar tactics that have shown success to reach the next generation.

Amy Rue: When we were first founded in 2005 with the Thomas and Stacey Siebel Foundation, Montana was ranked number five in abuse in the entire country. But by applying the model that Tom Siebel and the people at the Meth Project Foundation came up with, which is again showing the risks of what meth can do to you, your family, your community- we quickly dropped to 39th within the first two years of employing our models of communication strategies, community outreach, working with other teams, serving organizations and partners throughout the state.

Rue says the Meth Project has made incredible strides in reducing first time meth among teens.

Amy Rue: We have a 77% reduction since our inception in 2005. But the reality is that it's the adults that are putting children in danger, putting them into the foster care system. It's being used in human trafficking. It's being involved in more physical assaults and property crimes as the attorney general also mentioned today. So meth is really behind a lot of the problems that we're seeing in Montana.

Click here for more details on the "Paint the State" competition.

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