Lifeline Regional Coordinator
Metropolitan Drug Commission
4930 Lyons View Pike
Knoxville, TN 37919
Knoxville, TN 37919
Phone: (865) 588-5550 ext 104
FAX: (865) 588-0891www.metrodrug.org
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Substance abuse forum held in Campbell County
By Charlotte Underwood
Overdose is the number one cause of death in Tennessee. It used to be car accidents, but overwhelming substance abuse in young and old alike have brought about a new era of death and disease – the disease of addiction.
In an effort to improve the substance abuse epidemic, the Campbell County Health Council and multiple local agencies held a community forum yesterday to discuss the problem. The event was held at New Life Ministry in Jacksboro. Around 75 people attended the forum to “brainstorm” about ways to help solve substance abuse.
Over 70 people gathered together on Wednesday to discuss the problem of substance abuse and drug addiction in the county. The event was sponsored by the Campbell County Health Council.
A panel of substance abuse resources including the Metropolitan Drug Commission, Tennova, and Ridgeview were on site to field questions and speak about resource needs.
According to statistics from the Governor’s Report, young Tennesseans are using prescription drugs at a 30-percent higher rate than the national average.
Lifeline Regional Coordinator Stan Grubb helped to initiate the forum in Campbell County by calling the health council. A recovering alcoholic who feels very passionately about his mission, Grubb works to “facilitate recovery” in a 16-county region that includes Campbell.
“I have buried five of my friends recently. This is life or death stuff we are dealing with here; it’s either the abundance of life or the destruction of death,” Grubb said to an attentive audience.
Lifeline Regional Coordinator Stan Grubb helped to facilitate the substance abuse forum held at New Life Ministries on Wednesday. A second meeting will be held on Oct. 15.
The sheriff’s department, the county mayor’s office, local churches, Helen Ross McNabb, Celebrate Recovery, AA, NA, Al-Anon/Ala-teen, Community Health of East Tennessee, CAB members, Anti-Drug Coalition, Shepherd’s Home, Government offices, and other service representatives from all over the county were also in attendance.
Out of the forum, it was learned that the county needs more resources such as addition support groups and meeting places. Prevention was deemed to be perhaps the most important, with an emphasis placed on the county’s youth who are very vulnerable.
In 2011, Campbell County ranked eighth highest for children removed from homes and placed in foster care, which is two times the state average. According to DCS officials, these numbers are directly linked to drug and substance abuse.
According to Interventionist Bill Lee with Cornerstone Recovery, talking about the disease is the most effective treatment.
Treatment specialists on the panels said people also need to realize that rarely does recovery happen on the first try.
“It often takes two or three or more tries; you have to keep trying again and again. You have to walk beside people and help them along – you have to speak life into people” Grubb said, adding that there was already enough shame and condemnation heaped upon the stigma of addiction.
“People need hope and encouragement; speak words of encouragement if nothing else,” Grubb said.
The forum was just the beginning and a second meeting will be held October 15.
For more information about receiving help with recovery, people can call 423.562.2526. (08/22/2014 - 6:00 AM)