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Meeting seeks remedy for medicine abuse

NTTF, coroner seek community solutions for growing problem

Published: Saturday, Oct. 13, 2012 6:59 a.m. CDT

At one point or another, people have all used prescription drugs or over-the-counter (OTC) medicines to alleviate an illness – whether it’s to relieve pain or curb a cough.

Unfortunately, too many young people and adults are abusing these drugs for a quick high. In response to the county’s increase in medicine abuse, the Grundy County No Tolerance Task Force (NTTF) is partnering with Grundy County Coroner John Callahan to hold a town hall meeting to address this issue and receive community input on how to solve this problem.

The event will take place at 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 18, at Morris Municipal Services Building-Community Room, 700 N. Division Street, Morris.

The event will feature a panel of professionals from the health care field, treatment specialist, pharmacology and law enforcement from Morris and the surrounding area. They will speak about the misuse and abuse, dangerous side effects, treatment and counseling and the penalties for possession or distribution of drugs.

Nationally, prescription drugs are the second most abused category of drugs after marijuana, with one in five young adults reporting that they have abused a prescription drug.

“Locally, our coalition has been working to reduce and prevent medicine abuse by teens and adults through education, community engagement and local policy changes,” said Paula Goodwin, NTTF coordinator and prevention specialist. “By bringing together parents, educators, health professionals and other concerned citizens for this community forum, we hope we can prevent further misuse and abuse involving prescription drugs or over-the-counter medicines.”

The event is part of National Medicine Abuse Awareness Month, observed annually in October. The NTTF is one of hundreds across the country holding similar events. The national campaign, sponsored by Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America (CADCA) and the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA), aims to educate parents and youth of the potential dangers associated with prescription and OTC medicine abuse.

If you’re interested in attending this event, contact Paula Goodwin at (815) 941-3130; goodwin@roe24.org or visit us on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/pages/Grundy-County-NTTF/240587655643.

If you have outdated or un-used prescriptions drugs bring them to the event; there is a drop box outside the Municipal Services Building (Morris Police Department), for your convenience.

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