SIDNEY — The battle against drug use in Shelby County is on.
A Community Conversation, hosted by the Shelby County Drug Task Force, will be held Sunday, Oct. 1, at 7 p.m. in the sanctuary of St. John’s Church, 120 W. Water St., Sidney. The meeting is free and open to the public.
“The task force formed in 2016,” said Margo O’Leary of Wilson Health, one of the task force partners. A member of the education and awareness committee, O’Leary said the group decided to hold community conversation meetings to educate the public.
“We will have information, statistics and a lot of discussion surrounding the issue,” said O’Leary. “We’ll have a variety of people as our panelists. Some are members of the task force, others are with law enforcement and counselors.”
Scott Barr, Shelby County United executive director, will serve as the moderator for the event. Pamelists include Sidney Police Chief Will Balling; Julie Clay, Shelby County Counseling Center; Shelby County Coroner Dr. A. David McDonald; Dr. Stephens Roberts, Wilson Health Emergency Department; Tom Bey, Shelby County Department of Job & Family Services; Cameron Haller, Sidney Fire Department; Steven Tostrick, Shelby County Health Department; and Shelby County Sheriff John Lenhart.
O’Leary said the panel held a dry run this past week.
“We had a group of volunteeres who sat with us,” said O’Leary. “They came in with a different perception than what they left with. They told us their eyes had been opened in terms of what we’re seeing locally.”
The meeting, she said, is the first step in educating the community.
“We all know someone who is affected by drugs,” said O’Leary. “This is the first tep in bringing education to our community. If you attend the community conversation you are going to be informed. We’ll give out information about resources that are available in the area. There are people who know how to help and they will be available to you.”
Task force partners include Bridges Community action Partnership, city of Sidney, city of Sidney Councilman, Council on Rural Services, Family and Children First Council, Metropolitan Housing, Midwest Regional Educational Service Center and Shelby County Junvenile Court, Ohio Highway Patrol Post commander, Samaritan Works, Shelby County Adult Probation, Shelby County Board of DD, Shelby County CASA, Shelby County Commissioners, Shelby County Cousneling Services, Shelby County Health Department, Shelby County Job & Family Serevics, Shelby County Proscuector, Shelby County Sheriff’s Office, Shelby County United Way, Sidney Fire Department, Sidney Police Department, Tr County Board of Recovery, Anna Police chief, Botkins police chief, Fort Loramie police chief, Jackson Center police chief and Wilson Health.
Reach the writer at 937-538-4822.