Review methadone program, keep drug off street, user says

Barb Sweet
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Crash Jones, who is on the methadone program, says the rules should be reviewed so it can’t end up on the street. — Photo by Barb Sweet/The Telegram

The death of Jeffrey Payne is an alarm that the methadone program needs a re-examination to keep it off the street, says St. John’s musician Crash Jones, who takes the addiction therapy drug.

“Methadone is a very good drug for people who need it,” said Jones, who is on the program for the third time.

“Now is the time to make sure we fix it. When there are more people (on the program), it’s harder to fix.”

Jones was moved by the story of Mary Payne this week in The Telegram. Payne has been speaking out about the death of her 17-year-old son in March. She believes his death was caused by him obtaining methadone on the street.

Jeffrey was not in the opiate addiction drug therapy program.

Some longstanding patients who use methadone are allowed to take their “carries” home rather than drink them in front of a pharmacist, and the drug is reportedly being sold for as much as $120 each on the street.

“How could this get in the hands of people?” Jones asked, becoming emotional over the teen’s death and the realization of what his own mother went through with Jones’ drug use.

“Seeing that story hurt me. … It should be stopped now.

 “We need to reign it in a bit or something. (Methadone) shouldn’t be on the street.”

Jones said he was initially on methadone for OxyContin addiction around 2004, travelling to Grand Falls-Windsor for treatment.

 He said he was kicked off because he used marijuana to quell the effects of the methadone, as he didn’t think his dose was right.

Jones’ second fall off the methadone program occurred as he tried to quit it too quickly, against his doctor’s advice. He wanted to taper off so he could work without having to go to the pharmacy daily.

Jones started using OxyContin again habitually in February 2011.

Now Jones wants to give methadone the full try that eluded him the first two times. He’d been a recreational drug user prior to trying OxyContin.

“I need to be on methadone three or four years to stabilize myself from the chaos of the last

15-20 years,” said Jones, who’s recording with his new group Crash Jones Band.

He’ll turn 38 in July.

“By the time I am 40, I want to be coming off methadone or done with it. But I’m not rushing it,” he said.

Near Jones as he spoke was a ball cap with the Major League Baseball logo of the Oakland As, his favourite team.

“That hat there is the first thing I bought myself in a while,” said Jones.

“All my money I had would go on drugs. The simple things like that hat in life, it’s real life. Little things like that you don’t experience when you are in the depths of addiction.”

Organizations: Major League Baseball

Geographic location: Grand Falls-Windsor

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Recent comments

  • MsPat
    August 30, 2012 - 00:18

    Well, this story just makes absolutely now sense to me. First of all Methadone is a legal drug just like my blood pressure medicine. And, I need to take it everyday just like I do my blood pressue medicine. I'm a taxpayer and NO ONE is paying for my methadone. I pay for it myself. This guy just doesn't get it. You can't put a time limit on when you are going to stop taking Methadone, ok!!! You are in recovery from a horrible drug addition,that you may not have had control over because you had a bad accident and became dependant on some pain pill. So, if you put a time limit on when you are going to stop taking the medicine, you will fail over and over again. I'm sorry for the death of that young person, but people are going to find any and all drugs on the street. Remember methadone is perscribed by a doctor just like all other drugs!

  • aaron
    June 07, 2012 - 06:54

    to David: What is eresponsible? I think those who pay for the treatment should get it. It is their money, not your tax dollars. Learn to spell before you call others stupid.

  • Taxpayer
    June 03, 2012 - 17:23

    Methadone takes the profit away from the Drug Dealer but lets be clear - it makes the NL Government the "Drug Dealer" at our expense. Methadone Treatments do not work other than helps stop the stealing and robbing for drugs. The taxpayer via the government becomes the street dealer. I suppose it is the better of two evils as we pay for others poor decisions in life as they blame everyone other than themselves.

  • Jeff
    June 03, 2012 - 16:33

    Wow... What a story!! Buddy's an addict for 20 years. Has been kicked out of programs in the past and god only knows what else. Yeah, please tell us what's wrong with the programs us tax payers pay so you junkies can get wasted, then us tax payers bail you out and you F$&@ it up for the 4th time probably. We should be telling you what to do, as we are paying for this treatment, and apparently wasted that money. Try this - stop doing drugs. Don't give me that BS that "you don't know what it's like" because I do. If you want to be a F up, then shoot up all you can. If you want a say in what happens to tax dollars, grow a pair, stop the drugs and then I will listen. Oh and get a job too. I'm probably paying for your welfare check as it sounds like you can't hold a job either.

  • Really?
    June 03, 2012 - 14:55

    I really don't understand how this jackass can say anything about keeping harmful things off the street. I'm sure he himself is harmful to the streets. How many times has he been in and out of the justice system for assault, robbery or theft? The gall he has to appear in an interview expressing his point of view of what is right and what is wrong. I'm sure the next time we see his name in the Telegram is when he's arrested for some unnecessary petty crime. Get out of the limelight and stop wasting tax payers money in more ways than one.

  • are u kidding me
    June 02, 2012 - 19:10

    You need too get a life I am on the methadone program this time is the first and only and I dont think you should have any say on anything about it seeing how it's you third time on it! it's crazy I had too wait a year to get on it and you have had three trys it's ridiculous. Some people out their are waiting so long to get on the methadone program you are abusing the system and should not have any say about anything.

    • Walter
      June 03, 2012 - 11:45

      As a person whose recovery from opiate dependence has been assisted by medication for several years I am appauled by this comment. This patient, who is being helped, is willing to throw thousands of patients who work and go to school "under the bus" just to get a little publicity for his garage band. On behalf of all the patients who need their take home medication to work and support families I say "shame on you".

    • David
      June 03, 2012 - 13:25

      As a eresponsible taxpayer who had the maturity and self-control to avoid drugs all my life, I am apalled by both these comments. Quit wasting my tax money on your self-indulgent, stupid life choices.

  • Mr.Mom
    June 02, 2012 - 18:31

    Keep true to yourself Crash and stay strong, keep doing what you are doing. Your life is more important than anything else in the world. You've travelled down that dark road, now is the time to take all the bad and make it into good. People may say "It's just a ball cap" but to me it's the first step in the right direction to the rest of your life. Good for you man.......Peace.