Another casualty: A review of A Boy Who Mattered

In January 2019, the National Institute on Drug Abuse issued an updated report on the use of opioids in the United States, including this observation:

In 2017, more than 47,000 Americans died as a result of an opioid overdose, including prescription opioids, heroin, and illicitly manufactured fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid. That same year, an estimated 1.7 million people in the United States suffered from substance use disorders related to prescription opioid pain relievers, and 652,000 suffered from a heroin use disorder (not mutually exclusive).

We must be honest about adolescent addiction

By Beth Young • Guest Columnist

“It’s just a phase.” “They are just being teenagers.” “I drank when I was their age and I was fine.” These are things I know that I heard as a kid and that I have heard said to kids today. The flip side of these beliefs is the misconception that adolescents cannot develop substance-use disorders.

Western Carolina University event ‘walks the walk’ on opioid crisis

It’s been said time and time again after forums, panels and public meetings held in communities across the country over the past dozen-odd years: if we could talk our way out of the nation’s opioid crisis, it would have been over a decade ago. 

Region gathers to find recovery solutions

More than 150 leaders from Cherokee, Clay, Graham, Haywood, Jackson, Macon and Swain counties in North Carolina gathered Aug. 16 in Bryson CIty for the 7 County Western North Carolina Community Summit to discuss strategies about how to collectively create better cooperation in their efforts to encourage lifelong recovery for those suffering from substance use abuse and dependence.

Forced to Fight: Addicts long for life beyond heroin

Editor’s note: Names have been changed to protect the identity of those interviewed for this story. 

Five miles down an Appalachian dirt road 45 minutes from nowhere is where Daphne Laurel was raised, right in the heart of the sparsely populated mountainous region hit hardest by the ongoing opioid crisis. 

Forced to Fight: Law enforcement grapples with opioids in Appalachia

After a routine surgery, Haywood County native Clayton Suggs ended up hooked on opioids until on the first day alone in his new apartment after a year of sobriety, his addiction eventually cost him his life. 

Forced to Fight: Opioid data puts local addiction in context

It was finally moving day, and that empty little Greensboro apartment must have seemed like a mansion to 29-year-old Clayton Suggs. 

Fitting, the lack of furnishings; the whole thing was a blank slate, a new start.

Investigation finds ranger used illegal drugs

An investigation into a June 2018 incident involving the Blue Ridge Parkway’s Pisgah District Ranger Greg Wozniak concluded that Wozniak violated both Tennessee drug laws and federal rules found in the U.S. Department of Interior Personnel Bulletin and in a 1986 executive order mandating a drug-free federal workplace. 

State passes ‘Death by Distribution’ law

Gov. Roy Cooper signed the Death by Distribution Act into law earlier this month, making it easier for prosecutors to charge drug dealers with second-degree murder for selling someone a lethal dose. 

Creating a recovery community: Cherokee holds fourth annual Rally for Recovery

By now, most everyone is familiar — often far too personally — with the toll of the opioid epidemic. Lost lives, stolen futures, vanished trust. Loved ones transformed into unrecognizable ghosts of themselves. Law enforcement, mental health and emergency services pushed past capacity. 

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