~ October 4 Event Co-Hosted by Middlesex Community College ~
LOWELL, MA – October 5, 2011 – Representative Thomas A. Golden Jr. hosted a community education presentation with the national nonprofit, the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids, at Middlesex Community College to address an issue that is devastating the families of many of the Merrimack Valley’s youth: teen prescription drug abuse. On average, about 12 Massachusetts residents die each week from opioid overdoses, and more people in the Commonwealth die from fatal overdoses than car crashes each year.
“Teens don’t seem to understand the dangers of abusing prescription drugs, and the consequences are devastating,” said Rep. Golden. “Educating student leaders about the risks of these substances will help to spread the word in the Merrimack Valley High Schools that these medications can be very dangerous when abused.”
“Across the country we see that teens and parents alike underestimate the dangers of abusing prescription drugs,” said Marcia Lee Taylor, Senior Vice President at the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids. “We are thrilled to partner with community leaders like Rep. Golden to educate students about the risks of prescription drug abuse and help reduce the number of prescription drug-related tragedies in the Merrimack Valley.”
Students who attended the event left with a greater understanding of the problem of teenage drug addiction, both in the Merrimack Valley and across the country.
On Wednesday, October 12, together with Lt. Governor Murray, Rep. Liz Malia and Sen. John Keenan, the Partnership for Drug-Free Kids will share new findings from a survey of Massachusetts parents, revealing their attitudes and actions around teen abuse of prescription medicines. The briefing will take place at 11am at the Massachusetts Statehouse, Room A-2.