CHESAPEAKE, W.Va. — Delegate Chris Stansbury (R-Kanawha, 35) says drug addiction is a big problem in West Virginia and more conversations need to happen between health officials and the community.
“We lose hundreds of West Virginians every year to overdose and it has decimated whole communities,” said Stansbury. “There just doesn’t seem to be enough communication out there as far as those that are in charge of making decisions with how we treat addiction and how we deal with substance abuse in West Virginia and those that are actually living it.”
“They can ask questions of the panelists and be able to share information that they have with us about what it’s like to go through recovery hear in West Virginia or how they’ve struggled with their loved ones,” Stansbury said.On Monday, Stansbury will host an Addiction Summit in Chesapeake to discuss addiction-related challenges facing the state. A panel of addiction specialists, local health officials and law enforcement representatives will be on hand to hear from residents.
The panel will include:
Rahul Gupta, M.D.: Commissioner of West Virginia Bureau for Public Health
Kevin Yingling, R.Ph., M.D.: Founding Dean, Marshall School of Pharmacy
Anthony Martin: Chief Operating Officer for West Virginia Attorney General’s Office
Jim Rubenstein: Commissioner, West Virginia Division of Corrections
Rachel Thaxton: Program Coordinator, Recovery Point of Charleston
Beth Walker, Justice-Elect, West Virginia Supreme Court of Appeals
Capt. Timothy Bledsoe: WVSP Officer in Charge, Bureau of Criminal Investigations
An update of where the state is on the addiction problem, what measures seem to be working in West Virginia and what steps need to be taken are expected to be talked about at Monday’s summit, he said.
The event will be from 5:30 to 8 p.m. at the Dr. Lisa Curry Annex located at 12316 MacCorkle Ave in Chesapeake.