Health & Wellness

Press Releases

Middlesex County Experts and Residents Hold Dialogue on Opioid Crisis at Knock Out Opioid Abuse Town Hall

af7b9aea2e8567482cf2_partnership_drug.jpg
af7b9aea2e8567482cf2_partnership_drug.jpg

EAST BRUNSWICK, NJ  — Hundreds of Middlesex County residents learned from experts but also shared their concerns on the opioid epidemic ravaging the state at Tuesday’s Knock Out Opioid Abuse Town Hall hosted by the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ) at the Jo Ann Magistro Performing Arts Center at Hammarskjold Middle School.

The event was the 13th town hall in a series organized by PDFNJ and the Horizon Foundation for New Jersey to focus on the link between prescription drug dependency and heroin abuse.

A discussion panel moderated by 1450 WCTC host and New Jersey Broadcasters Association Hall of Famer Bert Baron covered all aspects of the crisis gripping New Jersey. Speakers on the panel included Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey; New Jersey State Senator Joseph Vitale (D ­– Middlesex); Assemblywoman Nancy Pinkin (D – Middlesex); Vanessa Vitolo, outreach coordinator with Victory Bay Recovery Center; and Bonnie Nolan, addiction services coordinator for Woodbridge Township.

Sign Up for E-News

“There are no easy answers,” PDFNJ Executive Director Angelo Valente said. “It is necessary for all of us to work together as a community to try to come up with ways to eradicate this epidemic.”

In 2016, an estimated 2,000 people in New Jersey died of an opioid overdose. Throughout the country, more than 64,000 people died of drug overdoses.

Opioid addiction has emerged as a major issue in recent decades due to the overprescription and misuse of painkillers, which has been linked to increased heroin use.

“Prescription drugs are a lot of times the gateway drug. Addiction starts at the pharmacy instead of the back alley,” Carey said. “Community forums like this where we work together are very important.”

The Middlesex County Prosecutor’s Office, Wellspring Center for Prevention, the East Brunswick Alliance for the Prevention of Alcoholism & Drug Abuse, East Brunswick Public Schools and 1450 WCTC served as collaborating partners for the town hall.

“This is an epidemic that has taken years to get to where it is today,” said Vitale, who serves as the Chair of the Senate Health, Human Services and Senior Citizens Committee. “This issue is not going away until enough people are in treatment and recovery and we began to reduce the demand.”

Photos of the event are available upon request. For more information on the Knock Out Opioid Abuse Town Hall Series, visit knockoutopioidabuse.drugfreenj.org.  

 

Best known for its statewide anti-drug advertising campaign, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey is a private not-for-profit coalition of professionals from the communications, corporate and government communities whose collective mission is to reduce demand for illicit drugs in New Jersey through media communication.  To date, more than $70 million in broadcast time and print space has been donated to the Partnership’s New Jersey campaign, making it the largest public service advertising campaign in New Jersey’s history. Since its inception, the Partnership has garnered 166 advertising and public relations awards from national, regional and statewide media organizations.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

South Brunswick-Cranbury

Police Blotter

South Brunswick and Cranbury Police Blotter

August 9, 2017

Sponsored by Reilly's Collision Center in Monmouth Junction. Click here and scroll down for the latest updates and alerts from South Brunswick and Cranbury Police.

See the most recent messages from South Brunswick Twp Police Department, powered by Nixle.

Upcoming Events

Sun, February 25, 11:00 AM

East Brunswick Jewish Center, East Brunswick

PurimFest

Arts & Entertainment Other Religions And Spirituality

Sun, February 25, 1:00 PM

St. David's Episcopal Church, Cranbury

Organizing for the 2018 Mid-terms: Elections, ...

Education Giving Back Government

Sat, March 3

New Jersey Dance Theatre Ensemble, Summit

NJDTE Summer Dance Intensive & Young Dancers ...

Arts & Entertainment Education

Nutley Police Department: Video Does Not Contain Direct Threat to Nutley Public Schools

February 16, 2018

NUTLEY, NJ - The Nutley Police Department report that the video that led to Nutley Public Schools being closed did not post a direct threat to any of the township's schools.

Police report that the person responsible for the video has been cooperating with the Nutley Police Department in their investigation. Interviews are on-going, The department is also investigating all ...

East Brunswick Business Owner Sues to Stop New Hotel Going Up in New Brunswick

February 16, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ -The owners of an East Brunswick hotel are suing to halt the construction of another such establishment a few miles away in New Brunswick.

Shan & Dylan LLC, who own a Comfort Suites just off Route 18, filed suit in an effort to press the New Brunswick Planning Board to rescind its approval of the four-story hotel, which ​was issued in November.

That proposal calls for ...

South Brunswick: Volunteer Soccer Coach Charged With Possessing And Distributing Child Pornography

SOUTH BRUNSWICK, NJ – A volunteer youth soccer coach and former Sunday school teacher is charged with possessing and distributing child pornography, officials said Thursday.

FBI agents and local law enforcement arrested Waldo Milla-Guerra, 49, at his Kendall Park home Thursday morning after executing a search warrant, officials said.

Milla-Guerra, a volunteer soccer coach with the ...

Rutgers to Host Exhibit of Sen. Frank Lautenberg Papers

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ - Frank Lautenberg, New Jersey’s longest-serving U.S. senator, left an outsize imprint on state politics and national policy by the time he died while in office, in 2013.

His papers, now curated and maintained by the Rutgers University Libraries, encompass 2,250 boxes of hats, buttons, campaign stickers, vinyl records, paper documents and other artifacts that, laid end ...

Prayers the Devil Answers by Sharyn McCrumb

Prayers the Devil Answers by Sharyn McCrumb (Altria, 2015)

 

Years later, after the tragedy, someone remembered the Dumb Supper and what had happened there. That was the cause of it, they said, because the ritual wasn't a game after all. It really was magic, but magic has rules, and she broke them. Even when they call it a 'senseless tragedy,' people always try to find a ...

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper

Super Carb Diet by Bob Harper with Danny Pellegrino (St. Martin's Press, 2017)

It's hard to go on a serious diet, one on which you expect to be successful and maintain a loss. Fortunately, in his new book Super Carb Diet, Bob Harper has given the weight watching world a sensible new diet plan to help achieve a healthy weight.

Harper, host of NBC's popular show The Biggest Loser, ...

Rep. Watson Coleman Statement on Indictment of 13 Russian Nationals

February 20, 2018

Washington, D.C. — Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ) issued the following statement in response to the announcement by the office of Special Counsel Robert Mueller of indictments of Russian businesses and nationals for a criminal conspiracy to interfere with the presidential election in 2016:

“Special Counsel Robert Mueller’s indictments are the latest ...

Hearts for Horses Fundraiser on Feb. 23 benefits SPUR

Come in from the cold and join Special People United to Ride, Inc. (SPUR) at its Hearts for Horses Fundraiser on Friday, Feb. 23, 2018 at 6:30 p.m.

All proceeds will benefit the SPUR Scholarship Fund. The event will be hosted by On the Deck Restaurant and Bar and will feature live music and a 50/50 raffle. Food will be available for purchase.

Tickets can be obtained for $25 at ...

Author Donates Portion Of Sales To Equestrian Aid Foundation

WELLINGTON, Fla. — Author Shane Ledyard will donate a portion of the paperback sales of his latest book, “Sycamore Whispers,” to the Equestrian Aid Foundation through February.

Equestrian Aid Foundation provides financial assistance to horse people from all corners of the U.S. equestrian world who are facing catastrophic injury or illness.

Purchase “Sycamore ...

How to Talk with Kids About the Florida Shooting

February 15, 2018

Guest Column

The tragedy of the Florida school shooting is devastating leaving 17 killed and 15 injured. Our children can easily identify with what occurred yesterday. It will be the topic of conversation today in schools everywhere. School administrators are doing all they can to provide support and guidance. The shootings affect children, teachers, and school personnel. The ...