Sometimes they’re easy. We learn at a young age that two plus two equals four. We know that the way to lose weight is through exercise and healthy eating.
But sometimes, solutions can be a little trickier.
And that’s what participants in the Governor’s Substance Abuse Regional Task Force meeting focused on when they met earlier this week.
On Tuesday, Kathy Paxton, who serves as the director of Substance Abuse Services of the State of West Virginia, encouraged the group gathered at the meeting to talk about the solutions for treating, preventing and using recovery methods surrounding substance abuse in the state.
The participants came from 13 counties — Monongalia, Preston, Marion, Doddridge, Harrison, Taylor, Barbour, Tucker, Gilmer, Lewis, Upshur, Randolph and Braxton — and the meeting was part of a series of task force meetings around the state.
Statewide, the meetings allow residents, educators, doctors or individuals who work with people battling substance abuse to gather in a central location and work toward fighting the problem. The meetings also serve as a way to let participants voice their concerns and plans about preventing and treating substance abuse, and those ideas are then passed along to Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s advisory council.
In other words? They’re working toward solutions.
And their work has already seen some success, as Paxton explained.
“It’s resulted in some pretty significant substance abuse legislation and additional funding for treatment,” she said.
And while Paxton said there has been a decrease in prescription medication abuse in West Virginia, she said other drugs, such as heroin, are on the rise. She said limiting access to one drug can cause people to begin using another substance, and it’s crucial to connect those individuals with programs designed to help them.
That’s just one possible solution to the spiraling substance abuse problem that can be found around the state. As Travis Zimmerman, with the Marion County Adult Drug Court, pointed out, some counties don’t have access to services that treat individuals dealing with substance abuse. In other counties, there’s an abundance of those services.
“It’s always something we worry about when we’re talking about implementing a service,” he said. “It’s easy to implement some of these services in the urban counties, but it’s so difficult in some of these rural counties.”
Providing services for individuals dealing with substance abuse is a key step in treatment and prevention, and it’s another solution when it comes to solving the issue of substance abuse in West Virginia.
But so are meetings like the one organized Tuesday. While they might serve as one of the first steps toward solving the problem, these meetings are important because they prove that there are concerned citizens in this state who are eager to help their fellow West Virginians overcome issues with substance abuse.
Together, we can all be part of the solution.
Time is now for Tomblin to support King Coal Highway
U.S. Rep. Nick Rahall, D-W.Va., is asking Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin to add the King Coal Highway project to West Virginia’s six-year highway improvement plan. It is a logical request, and one that Tomblin should act promptly on.
United effort to keep NASA in Fairmont is essential project
The high-technology sector is obviously vital to the economy of North Central West Virginia.
That’s why a strong, united effort to keep the NASA Independent Verification and Validation Program in Fairmont is absolutely essential.
COLUMN: Calling all readers: Be heard
I love to talk to readers.
I love to hear concerns they have about stories we’ve written, things they think should be included in the newspaper and things they think shouldn’t be.
Korean War veterans are deserving of a memorial
NEEDED: A total of $10,000 for the Korean War Memorial this year.
And a good man has been placed in charge of the funding. Charlie Reese, former president of the Marion County Chamber of Commerce, is now director of the Marion County Development Office. His task was to make a recommendation as to what steps are necessary to keep the project moving.
Roll up your sleeves, give blood and you can save lives
It takes up to 100 units of blood to save the life of someone who sustains life-threatening injuries in a vehicle accident.
We’re hoping that the number of people who come to Fairmont Senior High School on Friday for and American Red Cross blood drive will exceed that amount.
Vehicles and motorcycles must share the road safely
The days are long. The weather is superb. There’s plenty of leisure time in these lazy days of summer.
It’s the perfect time to take a long motorcycle ride.
It’s also the perfect opportunity for us to take the time to remind not only riders but drivers of the need to share the road. And we feel compelled to mention it because just within the month of July, there have been two motorcycle-versus-car accidents within the City of Fairmont alone — one with severe injuries sustained by the motorcyclist and the other with less serious injury.
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Distracted driving: It isn’t worth fine or a life
Today marks the day that police agencies from six states are joining forces to crack down on one thing — distracted driving.
And they will focus on that traffic violation for a solid week, with the stepped-up effort to curb distracted driving wrapping up on Saturday, July 26.
COLUMN: Are we people watchers or people judgers?
Let me tell you about my little friend Robby. Well, actually, it’s more about his family and especially his mom. I didn’t get her name. I heard Robby’s name quite a bit, though, during a trip home from Birmingham, Alabama.
I noticed the family in the Birmingham airport immediately. They were just the kind of family you’d notice.
Relish the rich bounty of state’s diverse, unique food traditions
This week, a group of federal officials on a three-day culinary tour of the state visited the Greenbrier Valley to find out what most of us here already know — we have a rich food tradition in West Virginia.
The group was made up of officials from the Appalachian Regional Commission, the Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
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