John and Karen Kasich, the governor and first lady of Ohio respectively, launched a program two years ago: Start Talking. They hope to address the problem of drug addiction, especially with opiates and to prevent vulnerable citizens from becoming victims.
Ohio has one of the top five highest rates in the USA for drug overdose deaths. In 2014 2,744 people died from overdoses alone, up from 2,347 people in 2013. Only one state (California) had more overdose deaths than Ohio in 2014. To combat the rising tide of drug addiction, Start Talking hopes to do just that – get people talking. It’s difficult for a community to come together and face a deadly problem when awareness of the problem is low.
Heroin is a particularly dangerous problem. It seems to be everywhere, from poor neighborhoods to rich one. As a heroin epidemic sweeps the nations, diligence and education is being encouraged. Law enforcement officials, try as they may, have waged an ineffectual war on drugs for decades. Individuals and organizations now want to try a different, one of discussion and rehabilitation. Stopping drug addiction before it even starts is one of the most potent techniques available today.
Parents and authority figures are sometimes cited as reasons adolescents remain substance-free. “If [kids] talked to you early and often, they are 50 percent less likely to ever start using a drug,” said Karen Kasich. She says that hospitalization is one of the dangers, as teens can get addicted to strong painkillers and seek out dangerous alternatives. Drug addiction can begin quickly and without mercy. Start Talking plans to curb this without their prevention tools, strong message, and multiple programs. It doesn’t have to be about opiates, deadly as they are – drugs with potential for abuse include alcohol, tobacco, and prescription pills. Start talking today.