News Release
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
July 17, 2002

DRUG SUMMIT OPENS IN ALLENTOWN
DEA Opens Second of Three Pilot Sites Nationwide

Asa Hutchinson, Director of the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), in conjunction with U.S. Attorney Patrick Meehan, opened the second Integrated Drug Enforcement Assistance (IDEA) pilot site in Allentown, Pennsylvania.

The IDEA program will provide Allentown with long term support in developing and implementing prevention and treatment programs that will help the community to address underlining needs that make it vulnerable to drug use and trafficking.

"We are excited that Allentown has opened their community doors to the DEA. The IDEA initiative is new and untried. I cannot think of a better solution to America's drug problem than joining hands with the communities we pledge to protect," said Administrator Hutchinson.

Allentown, along with North Charleston, South Carolina, and Portsmouth, Virginia, has been selected by the DEA to participate in a new and untried initiative focused on improving the quality of life for the citizens in Pennsylvania.

"The basis for IDEA is partnering law enforcement with community coalitions. To have success in reducing the demand for drugs in America, our law enforcement efforts need to be combined with input from those communities effected by drug abuse and crime," said Administrator Hutchinson.

A wide range of government leaders, private citizens and law enforcement personnel are attending the two-day drug summit. Although the DEA's role as a law enforcement agency is well known, it's role in prevention activities is equally important in ridding our communities of illegal drugs. These activities include education and training for young people, parents, teachers, coaches, employers and community leaders.

For additional information, contact IDEA Coordinator Pamela Brown at 202-497-7233 or Thomas Hinojosa at DEA Headquarters, Media Relations, at 202-307-7977, or visit DEA's website at www.dea.gov.

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