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Opioids discussed during town hall

The North Central Iowa Opioid Task Force sponsored a Town Hall on Tuesday.

Panelists opened the night by talking about the intersection of their work or personal spheres with the opioid crisis.

Panelists included Sgt. Don McLaren, of the Fort Dodge Police Department, Webster County Chief Deputy Rod Strait, Substance Abuse Counselor Carrie Cook from Community and Family Resources, John Daniel Jr. from Daniel Pharmacy, Mandi Crouse-Kelley from the YWCA, Dr. Shaun O’Neill from Clay and Associates and Denise Ryder, a parent who lost her son to opioid overdose.

Ryder offered some advice to help keep loved ones safe.

“Talk to the people closest to you,” Ryder said. “Ask questions to find out what’s going on in their lives and the things going on around them. Be part of the solution rather than being part of the problem.”

Moderator Ben Rasmussen from Community and Family Resources took questions from the audience to ask the panel.

The importance of prevention and education to keep Iowa from becoming as affected as most states have been was a recurring theme coming from many panelists.

Anyone interested in the Task Force’s operations or future planning can contact Wayne Judkins at waynej@cfrhelps.org.