GALLIPOLIS — Gallia Citizens for Prevention and Recovery coalition members shared what to look for when suspecting a family member or child of drug use, during the coalition’s recent, regular meeting.
CPR members attended a Hidden in Plain Sight program training with some Gallia Sheriff’s Office school resource officers in Knox County in December. CPR members presented what they learned from the training to fellow members.
“We have a small amount of items that we have gathered and all of this stuff has been donated graciously by an anonymous donor,” said CPR member Selina Mitchell. “We appreciate the community and its supporting us in putting this out there to show parents what look for in our students and keep our young people from using drugs and alcohol.”
Colleague Lisa Osborne also led discussion. She said both ladies were particularly interested in knowing what specific statistics would be available for Gallia students and the potential for putting together a survey to gauge the level of drug use and attitudes among the region’s youth.
“One of the cool things that Knox County had was his resource kit,” said Mitchell. “It includes their local statistics, felony and misdemeanor guidelines, and has resources for parents locally for what they can do and where they can go (to get assistance with drug concerns). It also has personal stories. We hope to get something like this going.”
Both Osborne and Mitchell displayed what looked like everyday, household items like soda cans and cleaning packages. Opening cups, cans and the like revealed hidden spaces where one could hide items. Some of the cups were evening functional.
Osborne said some of the items may be hiding in a teen’s garbage, looking like a regular can.
The ladies also cautioned that parents should keep on an eye on their child’s phone use. Some smartphones now have applications with faux icons that can be used to mimic another application’s appearance but may lead to hidden information stored in another part of the device.
Red flags parents should immediately be concerned with include finding needles, alcohol wipes, small scales and more.
The CPR coalition consists of area nonprofits such as God’s Hands at Work, the Field of Hope Community Campus, as well as behavioral health organizations such as Wing Haven, Health Recovery Services, the Gallia County Sheriff’s Office, the Gallia County Prosecutor’s Office, Gallipolis Neighborhood Watch, Holzer Health System, Gallipolis City Commission, the Gallia County Health Department and more. With the goal of fighting drug abuse in Gallia, the group commonly meets the second Monday of the month at noon in various rooms at Holzer Medical Center. The group can be reached at its Facebook page.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2342, ext. 2103.