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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, November 8, 2012

U.S. Attorney's Office Set To Host Prescription Drug Abuse Summit Next Week

The Southwest Virginia Prescription Drug Abuse Summit On November 14 Will Be First Of Its Kind For The US Attorney’s Office

ROANOKE, VIRGINIA -- The abuse of prescription drugs in Southwest Virginia is a public health and safety epidemic. In response to this epidemic, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia, under the leadership of Timothy J. Heaphy, has designed a prescription drug abuse summit with partners in law enforcement, treatment and prevention and economic development. The summit will address the ever-expanding problem of prescription drug abuse and produce an action plan to combat it, written with the help of research partners at the University of Virginia at Wise and Radford University.

“Prescription drug abuse has had a profound impact on communities across Southwest Virginia. We must take a proactive approach to this problem and combine enforcement, prevention and educational solutions. Fortunately, there are scores of talented and dedicated professionals across Southwest Virginia who are committed to working on this persistent problem and attempting to minimize the impact of abuse on our workforce, our criminal justice system, and our social services. This office appreciates the talent and commitment assembled at our Prescription Drug Abuse Summit. We are confident our time together can produce solutions.”

The U.S. Attorney added that this summit will approach the issue of prescription drug abuse from all angles, including looking at the impact this abuse has on the economic development of the region and the work force.

Panel discussions will cover the approach by law enforcement, the treatment and prevention community and how prescription drug abuse affects the region’s economic development. In addition, a plethora of individuals speakers will address the summit, including Marla Decker, the Secretary of Public Safety, a pharmaceutical industry representative and members of the prosecution team that prosecuted Abbott Labs.

Over 200 attendees, including representatives of local non-profits, law enforcement and the treatment and prevention community will be in attendance at the November 14 event.

The goal of the Southwest Virginia Prescription Drug Abuse Summit is to have those present take part in an open and direct discussion about the impact prescription drugs are having on our communities and develop a plan of action to combat the problem.

The Southwest Virginia Prescription Drug Abuse Summit will take place on Wednesday, November 14, 2012 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. at the Wytheville Meeting Center in Wytheville, Virginia. Attendance is free with an RSVP.

Updated April 14, 2015