SALEM, Ohio (WKBN) – Salem High School hosted a session Wednesday evening to help parents protect their children from vaping and drugs to internet dangers.
About 50 people gathered inside of the auditorium to hear from three speakers about things posing a risk to their kids.
On the stage first was Dr. Mike Sevilla, who pointed out vaping, mainly Juul, was causing other issues.
“The Juul effect has not only affected vaping and e-cigarettes, but also traditional cigarettes,” he said.
Sevilla said early advertising of traditional cigarettes showed doctors recommending a certain brand. He said similar advertising is still used today.
“When things like Juul came out, that’s why they use these social media influencers to kind of push their product. That’s why a lot of these kids are using this now.”
The second topic discussed was drugs. They mentioned weed and THC vape cartridges. When they talked about heroin, they said it was seen a lot in the mid-2000s but now there’s practically none at all.
“It’s been three years since we’ve seen heroin,” said Lt. Brian McLaughlin, with the Columbiana County Drug Task Force. “The heroin is always mixed with something, if there’s any heroin at all.”
He went on to say heroin is eight times stronger than morphine — but it gets worse.
“Fentanyl is 40 times stronger than heroin. Carfentanil is 100 times stronger than fentanyl. That’s 4,000 times stronger than heroin,” McLaughlin said.
Then there was internet safety. The experts told parents to watch what information their child shares online, especially if they’re just getting started with a social media site.
“They’re made in a way to invite you in,” said J.P. Rigaud, with the Ohio Attorney General’s Human Trafficking Task Force.
As of 2018, the four most common drugs reported in Ohio were methamphetamine, crack/cocaine, fentanyl and heroin.