Yes, there’s the first question that comes to mind in reading a recent story such as the one about Johnston County sheriff’s deputies raiding a methamphetamine lab outside Clayton and finding that a 4-year-old and a 6-year-old lived in the home. The 4-year-old was in the house when the raid happened, and a nurse found the child to be covered in vapors from the meth operation.
How could any adult put a child in such danger? Law enforcement and social workers do what they can, putting such children in the care of responsible family members or friends or, without other alternatives, foster care. But clearly, with 106 children injured or affected this year in North Carolina by exposure to these operations, triple the number since 2009, a focus is needed on how to help them: what do neighbors have to look out for? What standard should parents have to meet to get these children back? The standard should be tough.
And the state legislature is considering, and should act on, requiring prescriptions for cold medicines containing pseudoephedrine, a main ingredient used to make methamphetamine.
And still we ask, how could they?