SCHUYLKILL HAVEN –Senator David G. Argall (R-Schuylkill/Berks) and District Attorney Christine Holman joined county and state officials today in Schuylkill County for a roundtable discussion regarding the local impacts of the heroin and opioid addiction crisis.
The conversation focused on ongoing programs to reduce drug abuse, particularly among young people.
Lawmakers approved several new measures to address the crisis during the 2015-16 Legislative Session. Argall stressed the importance of legislators continuing to work with law enforcement, health care providers and the judicial branch to explore new solutions.
“The consequences of the addiction crisis have been staggering, but it is a complicated problem with no easy solutions,” Argall said. “There is a critical need to attack this problem from every possible angle. I appreciate all of the panelists who took the time to examine existing programs and new proposals to help save lives.”
“As the Chief Law Enforcement Officer in Schuylkill County I work daily with law enforcement to deter drug crime by conducting drug raids and following leads to lessen the supply and demand for heroin in Schuylkill County,” Holman said. “Notwithstanding my main focus being arresting and prosecuting unlawful activity, I am always ready and willing to listen to new ideas on combatting this current crisis.”
In addition to Argall and Holman, other panelists included:
- Stephanie A. Bradley, Ph.D., Managing Director, Evidence-based Prevention and Intervention Support Center, The Penn State University
- Barry L. Denk, Director, Center for Rural Pennsylvania
- Jon Gamble, MA, CADC, Program Director Gaudenzia, Chambers Hill Adolescent Program
- Michael Pennington, Director, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, PA Commission on Crime & Delinquency
- Andrew Potteiger, Superintendent, Brandywine Heights Area School District
Schuylkill County Area School Districts, local police departments and social service agencies were also invited to participate.