'Meth. We're On It' campaign started Monday

Published: Nov. 18, 2019 at 6:11 PM CST
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The State of South Dakota has launched a new campaign geared toward helping people struggling with meth addiction.

State leaders say they want to tackle the methamphetamine issue. But not everyone is excited about the campaign's slogan, "Meth. I'm On It."

"South Dakota's Meth crisis is growing at an alarming rate," said Governor Kristi Noem in the new PSA.

"The mission of the campaign is to get everybody in the State on board to recognize the signs of addiction, and to know that we have treatment resources available," Laurie Gill, the Secretary for the South Dakota Department of Social Services.

"Meth is not some one else's problem, it's every one in South Dakota's problem," said the voice-over in the television ad.

"There will be a variety of different media sources such as TV, radio, print ads, billboards, so it will be a comprehensive campaign," Gill said.

However, the campaign's tagline is drawing a lot of criticism on social media - the topic was trending on Twitter Monday. Some made jokes about the slogan, while others criticized the cost. According to the Open SD website, the state has paid the Minneapolis-based ad agency Broadband just under $449,000 so far to pay for the media campaign.

Several national media outlets like ABC News and The New York Times have picked up the story.

But state leaders say that's the point.

"We knew that going out we have to get something out there that captures the attention of South Dakota, we have to cut through the clutter of advertising, and social media messages to get people to stop and think about this important issue," Gill said.

Laurie Gill is the Secretary for the South Dakota Department of Social Services, she said this slogan was created to capture people's attention.

"What we were looking for is a unique way to show that we are responsible as a community to help combat the issue," Gill said.

She thinks the campaign has been very effective so far.

"It's going to raise the awareness of folks and get people talking and I think it's already doing that," Gill said.

Ultimately, the Department of Social Services wants to help people who are using the drug, get off it.

"That's one thing we're going to be expecting is that a lot of folks are going to be coming forward saying how can I work on this issue, what can I do to make a difference, and we're going to be leading people to those ways to pulls together to make a difference," Gill said.

This campaign will now help provide resources 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

During the first eight months of this year, there were more than 2,000 meth-related arrests across the state.