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Drugs of Abuse and Drug Endangered Children

Training and Technical Assistance


Every day, children in Indian Country face emotional and physical neglect, bodily harm, and even sexual abuse because their parents or caregivers use, possess, deal, or manufacture illegal drugs or other controlled substances. In some homes, children are in constant physical danger due to the presence of syringes, toxic chemicals, weapons, or the parents themselves. Because of abuse and neglect, far too many of these children face injury or even death.


The issues surrounding drug endangered children are complicated and varied. Law enforcement agencies are often the first to identify drug endangered children, but their primary responsibility and training do not necessarily equip them to recognize or fully respond to the needs of children. Arguably, law enforcement has missed opportunities to intervene. This webinar will focus on the DEC response which increases the likelihood of identifying and intervening on behalf of children at risk of neglect and abuse. Responding to the needs of a child in a dangerous drug environment cannot and should not rest with law enforcement alone. Comprehensive partnerships between law enforcement, prosecutors, tribal justice systems, child welfare workers, educators, and others are critical for the effective protection of these children.

November 6, 2013

10-11AM MDT


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  • We will provide a definition of drug endangered children and raise awareness regarding the problem.
  • We will demonstrate how illegal drug activity endangers children.
  • We will discuss opportunities to identify children living in dangerous drug environments and encourage intervention at the earliest point possible to help reduce physical and psychological harm to children.
  • We will examine the challenges in aligning systems responsible for preventing, intervening, and treating drug endangered children and discuss how a common vision of breaking the cycle of abuse and neglect for the next generation can help build collaborative responses.
  • We will connect you to resources that can help you take the next steps towards becoming part of the solution to break the cycle of abuse and neglect.

lori moriarty

Lori Moriarty
Vice President of the National Alliance for Drug Endangered Children, began her career in law enforcement in Colorado in 1987 with the Thornton Police Department. From 2000 to 2006, she was the commander of the North Metro Task Force, a multi-jurisdictional undercover drug unit.


Lori has been instrumental in implementing protocols for the safe investigation of methamphetamine labs and undercover drug operations. She has educated thousands of professionals across the nation about hazardous drug environments and their effects on children, and appeared on ABC News' 20/20, Fox National News, MSNBC, NPR and PBS. In April 2005, she testified before the House Judiciary Committee in Washington, DC on H.R. 1528, "Defending America's Most Vulnerable: Safe Access to Drug Treatment and Child Protection Act of 2005."


Lori's safety stance and public awareness efforts have won her regional and national attention.  In 2001, the Office of National Drug Control Policy recognized her as Drug Commander of the Year.  The Adams County Bar Association in Colorado named Lori and the North Metro Task Force "2002 Peace Officer of the Year," and in 2004, she received the "Friend of Children" award through the State of Colorado Court Appointed Special Advocates.


In 2004, Lori joined the Colorado Alliance for Drug Endangered Children; in 2006, she joined National DEC, where she now serves as the Senior Vice President of Education and Outreach. 

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Lamar Associates- Indian Country Training 
P.O. Box 7960 Albuquerque, New Mexico 87194
p: 202.543.8181    f: 505.717.1515

This project is supported by a Grant# 2012-CK-WX-K030 awarded by the Office of Community Oriented Policing Services, U.S. Department of Justice. The opinions contained herein are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice. References to specific companies, products, or services should not be considered an endorsement by the author(s) or the U.S. Department of Justice. Rather, the references are illustrations to supplement discussion of the issues.