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Oct. 25, 2020

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Vancouver group hosts talk on youth opioid abuse

Forum is one of several local events focusing on drug abuse prevention

By , Columbian Health Reporter

A Clark County substance abuse prevention coalition is hosting a forum on youth opioid use and is joining with local and state agencies in other efforts this month. The April events align with Prevent Coalition’s mission to reduce the toll opioids are taking on the community.

The Community Conversations About Youth and Opioids in Clark County is 3:30 to 5 p.m. April 19 at the Educational Service District 112 Conference Center, 2500 N.E. 65th Ave. in Vancouver.

The expert panel will include Adiba Ali, an epidemiologist with Clark County Public Health; Jim Jensen, clinician with InAct; Denise Livingston, prevention intervention specialist with ESD 112; David Helgeson, mental health professional with Juvenile Recovery Court; and Gerardo Gutierrez, school resource officer at Mountain View High School.

The panel will discuss issues surrounding youth opioid use in Clark County and identify solutions for prevention and intervention.

Prevent Coalition is also taking part in this month’s Drug Take Back event. From 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. April 28, Clark County residents can dispose of unwanted medications for free at four local drop sites. There will also be a site in Skamania County.

The drop-off locations are:

• PeaceHealth Southwest Urgent Care, back parking lot, 3400 Main St., Vancouver.

• Kaiser Permanente Cascade Park Medical Office, 12607 S.E. Mill Plain Blvd., Vancouver.

• Battle Ground Police Department, 507 S.W. First St., Battle Ground.

• Washougal Silver Star Search and Rescue, 1220 A St., Washougal.

• Skamania County Sheriff’s Office, 200 N.W. Vancouver Ave., Stevenson.

In addition to the two events, Prevent will take part in the state Department of Social and Health Services’s opioid campaign, It Starts with One. The campaign is designed to educate young adults, their parents and older adults about the dangers of prescription drug misuse and the importance of safe storage, use and disposal. The coalition will push the campaign message on social media and in newspaper and movie ads, as well as disseminate information with prescription opioids through local pharmacies.

For more information about the campaign, visit