Atwater is a lovely and up to date city on State Route 99 in Merced County, in the state of California, in the United States of America. Atwater is no less than eight miles west-northwest of Merced, and is at an elevation of 151 feet. The population as of the 2010 census as reported by the United States Census Bureau was 28,168.
As for its history, the railroad reached Atwater in the 1870s, and a town grew up from there almost instantly. The first post office opened in the year of 1880. Atwater incorporated in 1922 into an official city. The name of the city actually honors Marshall D. Atwater, a wheat farmer whose land was used by the railroad for its station.
Atwater has a lot to offer to both new residents and visitors alike. Some of the points of interest in Atwater are:
• Two high schools, Atwater High and Buhach Colony (Olympic Size Pool)
• Eight elementary Schools
• One private school, grades PK through eight
• Fifteen minutes to a Community College Campus
• Twenty minutes to a University of California Campus
• Major freeway travels through the city limits (hwy 99)
• Two major railroads north and south of city
• Castle Airport has the 4th longest runway in Western United States, former Castle Air Force Base
• Castle Air Museum has one of the finest military aircraft displays in the country
Drug and Alcohol Abuse Makes a Comeback in Atwater
Sadly, drug and alcohol abuse and addiction have been increasing in popularity and regularity in Atwater for some time now. These substances have had bad effect after bad effect after bad effect on the local residents and friends and families of Atwater, and this truth has done nothing but sow discontent and unhappiness in and around the area.
Truthfully, the problem with drug and alcohol addiction has made a big impact on this city. Though it did not suffer with substance abuse prior to the turn of the century, the city of Atwater has still suffered in different ways and with different problems of one kind or another. True enough though, the substance abuse issue has gotten severe and serious in many different types and ways.
Facts and Statistics on Addiction
For Atwater, the biggest problem has appeared in the name of crime as a result of substance abuse. This has definitely been the biggest and most prevalent issue in and around Atwater. For nationwide statistics on this, particularly as it pertains to alcohol abuse, (the number one abused substance in Atwater):
• Alcohol, more than any illegal drug, was found to be closely associated with violent crimes, including murder, rape, assault, child and spousal abuse. About 3 million violent crimes occur each year in which victims perceive the offender to have been drinking and statistics related to alcohol use by violent offenders generally show that about half of all homicides and assaults are committed when the offender, victim, or both have been drinking. Among violent crimes, with the exception of robberies, the offender is far more likely to have been drinking than under the influence of other drugs.
• Alcohol is often a factor in violence where the attacker and the victim know each other. Two-thirds of victims who were attacked by an intimate (including a current or former spouse, boyfriend or girlfriend) reported that alcohol had been involved, and only 31% of victimizations by strangers are alcohol-related. Nearly 500,000 incidents between intimates involve offenders who have been drinking; in addition, 118,000 incidents of family violence (excluding spouses) involve alcohol, as do 744,000 incidents among acquaintances.
Rehabilitation Sought as a Solution
Crisis after crisis has hit different states in the United States for some time now. These problems and issues have manifested themselves in different ways, but few have showcased themselves in as strong of a presence as drug and alcohol addiction has. This is currently the biggest problem that Atwater has to face. It has been the biggest problem for over 15 years. Though Atwater is not a particularly big city, and though many would not even consider it a mid-sized city, the drug problem here is still quite severe. This is an area that has struggled for over a decade now with substantial substance abuse amongst the young adult and middle class demographics of the city.
Much concern has been passed back-and-forth about this issue but few resolutions have been found to be more than temporary ones. This is unfortunate to say the least, and if some kind of solution isn't found soon, then it is feared that the problem will more or less take over.
A popular solution that has proven to be effective that has only just recently come on the radar in Atwater has been the prospect of putting every single individual in the city who is addicted to drugs and alcohol through a full and complete inpatient, residential, drug and alcohol addiction and dependence treatment center, detox facility, rehabilitation program, and recovery organization.
With proper rehabilitation, anyone can beat their drug habit relatively easily. This is exactly what needs to be worked on in Atwater, and it needs to be worked on now. If the city is ever hoped to make strong forward progress in vanquishing it's drug problem then inpatient rehabilitation must be applied.