New Jersey Governor Chris Christie today joined the New Jersey Devils to deliver an important message to school students about drug abuse and addiction.
Governor Christie has made it a priority to fight the disease of addiction, which frequently starts with drugs, such as opioids, found in a family’s medicine cabinet.
“One of the best ways to fight drug abuse is before it starts,” said Governor Christie. “We need to educate students about the dangers of using illegal drugs or misusing prescription medications. And we appreciate the support and participation of the New Jersey Devils in our multi-pronged effort to combat opioid addiction. Hopefully, our message here today will help these young people to make right decisions to be drug free or help save the life of someone they know.”
The students attended a Devils practice session at the Prudential Center in Newark and then met with Governor Christie and members of the Devils organization to discuss the important role prevention plays in the fight against drug addiction.
Four out of five new heroin users started by misusing prescription painkillers. Even more alarming, a Centers for Disease Control report reveals that health care providers in the year 2012 alone wrote 259 million prescriptions for opioid pain medication, enough for every adult in the United States to have a bottle of pills.
In addition, an estimated 20 percent of juveniles with currently prescribed opioid medications report using those medications intentionally to get high or increase the effects of alcohol or other drugs.
Those with a drug problem or who may know someone with the disease of addiction, may visit www.reachnj.gov or call the state’s 24-hour a day, seven days a week helpline at 1-844-REACHNJ.