To help prevent a surge in opioid usage, county officials recently had a panel discussion, and Gardner officers attended.
Opioids are drugs derived from opium, including morphine and some semi-synthetic and synthetic drugs such as hydrocodone, oxycodone and fentanyl.
In 2016, Gardner saw an increase in opioid usage – primarily prescription pills – but the usage has leveled off in 2017.
Countywide, opioid court filings have been trending downward. Based on county data, opioid filings decreased by 37 percent from 2015 to 2016 while marijuana and stimulant filings increased, with methamphetamine accounting for 70 percent of all stimulant filings.
Continued community collaboration is one key to preventing an opioid –or other – drug surge.
To that end, officials and police departments work together to facilitate increased awareness.
Continuing education regarding drug use, as well as enforcement of drug laws — is one way of preventing abuse.
Local law enforcement also sponsors at least one drug disposal where unused/expired prescription medications can be safely discarded.
Education and increased awareness are two ways parents can be aware of any drug use.
GPD advises parents to be nosey, check social media and text messages, as that is where many drug deals are arranged.