Kuster Leads Roundtable in Salem on Youth Opioid Education and Prevention
(Salem, NH) – Today, Congresswoman Annie Kuster (NH-02), the co-chair of the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force, lead a roundtable discussion at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem on youth opioid education and prevention. The discussion, which drew an audience of community members, brought together local and state leaders addressing the opioid crisis and centered on the often overlooked impact of the epidemic on New Hampshire’s youth. Prior to the discussion, Congresswoman Kuster was given a tour of the Boys & Girls Club facility.
“The opioid epidemic is taking a toll on families and communities in every corner of our state,” said Congresswoman Kuster. “We know the impacts of the opioid crisis go beyond those suffering from substance use disorder, it extends to children and family members as well. We all have a role to play in tackling this crisis and I was pleased to have the opportunity to discuss programs aimed at protecting our youth with leadership at the Boys and Girls Club of Greater Salem, law enforcement, and educators. I will continue working in Congress to strengthen education, prevention, treatment and recovery services for Granite Staters of all ages.”
“The Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem wants to thank Congresswoman Kuster for having an important discussion regarding the impact that opioids are having in our community,” said Marco Abreau, COO, Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem. “The opioid epidemic that is hitting our communities is an unfortunate reality for many of our Club members. Many of our members are dealing with the cruel circumstances of their loved ones falling victim to addiction. The task at hand is definitely a challenge, however the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem will not waiver as we continue to push forward in the support of all our members and their families. Our mission states we will be here for the youth ‘who need us most’, and this holds true for the fight against the opioid epidemic.”
Kuster was joined by Marco Abreau, COO of Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem; Dave Razo, Director of the Teen Center at Boys & Girls Club of Greater Salem; Chief David Mara, Advisor on Addiction and Behavioral Health to Governor Sununu; Mary Lou Beaver of NH Afterschool Network; Sargeant Chad Clark of the Salem Police Department; Mike Delahanty, Superintendent of the Salem School District; Dawn Varney, Social Worker at Head Start, Southern New Hampshire Services; Cindy Jury, Executive Director of Salem Family Resources; and Keith Kuenning, Director of Advocacy at New Hampshire Child & Family Services.
In June, the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force released its legislative agenda for the 115th Congress. The agenda includes the Stem the Tide of Overdose Prevalence from Opiate Drugs (STOP OD) Act, which authorizes up to $75 million in educational grants to prevent opioid abuse, and the Synthetic Drug Act, which requires the Surgeon General to submit a report to Congress on the health effects of the rise of synthetic drug use among young people aged 12 to 18.