Westminster High to sponsor anti-drug forum tomorrow Law and health officials aim to educate parents

March 04, 1998|By FROM STAFF REPORTS

Law enforcement officials, school administrators, an emergency room doctor, parents and students have organized an anti-drug forum at Westminster High School tomorrow.

"Keeping Kids Off Drugs," an effort to educate parents about the dangers of substance abuse in Carroll County, opens at 7: 15 p.m. with presentations from the state police and the state's attorney. It ends with an account of a Westminster teen-ager who died from a heroin overdose, and a plea from his mother.

The high school student assistance team, which frequently deals with students in crisis, has also joined the effort.

A doctor practicing emergency medicine at Carroll County General Hospital will offer evidence of Carroll County's drug problem. The Westminster hospital treated 41 heroin overdoses and 16 cocaine overdoses in the six-month period that ended in January.

"Those numbers are even higher if statistics from neighboring hospitals are included," said Linda Auerback, a founder of Residents Against Drugs (RAD).

RAD formed in response to a student's death from heroin two months ago. Members are lobbying for tougher drug enforcement laws and more education, particularly for parents.

"We are opening this forum to the entire community, because education is so important in fighting drugs," said Auerback.

In a letter to Westminster High School parents, Principal Sherri-Le W. Bream urged the community to "pull together to eliminate the drug problem among teens. One of the first steps is to have an informed community."

The school is at 1225 Washington Road. Information: 410-751-3630.

Pub Date: 3/04/98

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