COLUMBUS, Ohio (AP) — First-ever data produced by the state shows heroin use is skyrocketing in child custody cases in Ohio.
The figures run by the state human services agency finds almost 7,000 instances where heroin was cited in custody cases last year, an 83-percent increase from just three years earlier.
The data also finds methadone use growing slightly as a factor cited in cases, while cocaine use is dropping slightly.
State children’s advocate Gayle Channing Tenenbaum tells The Associated Press the numbers reflect the role heroin is now playing in child custody cases.
Tenenbaum is highlighting the figures as she lobbies for an additional $20 million for the state’s child welfare system.
An annual Health Department report released last month found record numbers of Ohioans dying of fatal heroin-related overdoses.