HOPE Initiative Partners Discuss Dangers of Heroin and Opioid Misuse and Abuse with High School Students in Albuquerque

U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez and UNM School of Pharmacy’s Generation Rx Representatives to Present Education Program to High School Students

HOPE Initiative’s National Heroin and Opioid Awareness Week Event to be Held on September 22, 2016 at Freedom High School

     ALBUQUERQUE – The New Mexico Heroin and Opioid Prevention and Education (HOPE) Initiative, a partnership between the UNM Health Sciences Center and the U.S. Attorney’s Office, is hosting a series of education events during National Heroin and Opioid Awareness Week, Sept. 19-24, 2016. 

     The HOPE Initiative’s Awareness Week events include two education programs at Freedom High School in Albuquerque, N.M., on Sept. 22, 2016.  U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez, and Brittany Haggard and Jordan Barton, Pharm. D. candidates at the UNM College of Pharmacy who are part of Generation Rx, will discuss the dangers associated with heroin and prescription opioid misuse and abuse with students at Freedom High School.  Generation Rx is an educational outreach program of the UNM College of Pharmacy that educates middle school, high school and college students, parents and senior citizens about the dangers of prescription drug misuse.  Discussion details from this event will be posted to the NM HOPE Initiative website and available to the public at www.hopeinitiativenm.org.

     Freedom High School is part of the Albuquerque Public School system.  It was founded in 1970 and established as an alternative school.  The school population is small with 160 enrolled.  Classes are generally 20 students or less with an emphasis on a strong relationship between advisee and advisor.  Freedom High School fosters a “strong sense of community ... from a culture of tolerance and compassion, open communication, and active student engagement and participation.”  Freedom High School’s mission is to provide “a small, safe, personalized learning environment where students are supported and challenged.”  Its primary goal is to help all students maximize their potential and graduate high school and successfully pursue post high school goals. 

WHO: U.S. Attorney Damon P. Martinez, Brittany Haggard, Pharm. D. Candidate at the UNM College of Pharmacy & Chairperson of Generation Rx Jordan Barton, Pharm. D. Candidate at the UNM College of Pharmacy & member of Generation Rx

WHAT: Education programs about the dangers associated with heroin and prescription opioid misuse and abuse with students at Freedom High School

WHEN:  Thursday, Sept. 22, 2016 Programs to begin at 10:30 am and 11:30 am

WHERE: Freedom High School
               5200 Cutler Ave NE
               Albuquerque, NM

OPEN PRESS

     NOTE: All media must present government-issued photo I.D. (i.e., driver’s license) and valid media credentials.  Media may take photographs and video-record as long as the students’ faces are not visible.  Media may begin to arrive at 10:15 am.  Inquiries regarding logistics should be directed to Alyssa Ferda at 505-224-1480 or alyssa.ferda@usdoj.gov.

     The HOPE Initiative was launched in Jan. 2015 by the UNM Health Sciences Center and the U.S. Attorney’s Office in response to the national heroin and opioid epidemic, which has had a disproportionately devastating impact on New Mexico.  Opioid addiction has taken a toll on public safety, public health and the economic viability of our communities.  Working in partnership with the DEA, Bernalillo County Opioid Accountability Initiative, Healing Addiction in our Community (HAC) and other community stakeholders, HOPE’s principal goals are to protect our communities from the dangers associated with heroin and opioid painkillers and reducing the number of opioid-related deaths in New Mexico.  The Initiative is comprised of five components:  (1) prevention and education; (2) treatment; (3) law enforcement; (4) reentry; and (5) strategic planning.  Learn more about the New Mexico HOPE Initiative at http://www.HopeInitiativeNM.org.

 

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Kyle Stake