Opioid Crisis: a Public Health Emergency, Even in Hancock County

The President of the United States has just declared the opioid crisis a public health emergency, and many local coalitions are putting together campaigns to get the word out so people can grasp the devastation these drugs have caused.  Hancock County ASAP or Allies for Substance Abuse Prevention is hosting a drug take back day this Saturday, October 28th from 9am to noon at the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office in Garner and the Britt Police Station. ASAP Director Karie Terhark says this is a great time for you to rid your home of old prescription drugs, and there will be coalition members on site to help.

Another part of ASAP’s campaign is to give people an in-depth look at what opioid addiction actually looks like.  Hancock County Allies for Substance Abuse Prevention will be premiering a free movie entitled “Written Off” at the Avery Theatre in Garner this Sunday, October 29th at 1pm. This feature documentary is based on the private journals of Matt Edwards, who died of an opioid overdose after a 10 year struggle with addiction. Before he died, he told his mom his journals would explain everything. Terhark tells about this touching story.

More than 140 Americans die every day from an opioid overdose, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Last year, more Americans died from overdoses than those who died in the entire Vietnam War conflict.  According to Terhark, opioid overdoses are killing more people than any other drug, so it seems fitting for the President of the United States to declare this a public health emergency.

The film “Written Off” is not recommended for youth under 16. Parents are encouraged to attend with your teenagers. Free admission, doors open at noon. Movie starts at 1pm. For more information, visit asap4hc.com.

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