You’re Invited to Safe Communities Coalition’s Annual Professional Fall Conference

There have been several informative events about the opioid epidemic held during the past month, in conjunction with Recovery Month in September and Knock Out Opioid Abuse Day earlier in October. For this week’s guest blog, we have invited Jerri Collevechio, Senior Director of Prevention Resources and Director of the Safe Communities Coalition in Somerset County, to discuss the upcoming Breaking Barriers to Succeed conference.

 

By Jerri Collevechio

The Safe Communities Coalition of Hunterdon/Somerset County and Prevention Resources, Inc. are excited to host the Annual Professional Fall Conference: Breaking Barriers to Succeed at 8 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 25 at Raritan Valley Community College.

The conference features keynote speaker The Honorable Patrick J. Kennedy, who will address “The Stigma of Mental Health, Substance Misuse and the Latest on the Opioid Crisis." Kennedy is a bestselling author, founder of two visionary nonprofit organizations, former congressman, corporate leader and the youngest child of former Senator Ted Kennedy. Kennedy will provide a compelling presentation detailing his personal and political battle with mental illness and addiction, exploring mental health care's history in the country alongside his and every family's private struggles.

The conference also features Christopher Jakim, Assistant Special Agent in Charge with the Drug Enforcement Administration – New Jersey Division, presenting “The Dangers of Fentanyl.” Overdoses and overdose deaths have increased in recent years in part due to heroin laced with fentanyl, adding to the opioid public health crisis. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, fentanyl is 50 times more potent than heroin and 100 times more potent than morphine. With the availability of fentanyl on the street, it not only poses a threat to the community, but to law enforcement. 

Tony Coder, Director of State and Local Affairs for Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), will present on "How Marijuana Will Impact Your Business.” This presentation provides data points from states that have legalized marijuana recreationally and the effects it has had on business. Topics include safety, productivity and litigation.

The Safe Communities Coalition of Hunterdon/Somerset County and Prevention Resources’ Annual Professional Fall Conference “Breaking Barriers to Succeed” will feature leading experts from the industry providing community members with a wealth of knowledge along with current trends and statistics. Six CEU credits will be provided for attendees. To register, please visit http://events.constantcontact.com/register/event?llr=vnbh489ab&oeidk=a07eef7bs61c1f24199.

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