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Officials promote drug abuse awareness, Red Ribbon Week

Executive Director Trish Burchette, Grant Coordinators Denise Woods, Kandas Motsinger, and Roxanne Roedel along with City Mayor Kevin Parsons
With ACTION Coalition Prevention Specialist, Denise Woods by his side, Mayor Mike Taylor signs a Red Ribbon Week Proclamation, supporting and promoting substance abuse awareness. Submitted photo

Staff Report

Town of Mountain City Board of Mayor and Aldermen declared October 23 through 31, as Red Ribbon Week during its regular meeting held this month on Tuesday, October 1.
“The town values the health and safety of all our citizens,” stated Mayor Kevin Parsons, “substance abuse is particularly damaging to our children and a contributing factor to the three leading causes of death of children – accident, homicide, and suicide.”
The goal of Red Ribbon Week is to involve the entire community and promote awareness and prevent drug use. During the meeting, City Council granted a request by the A.C.T.I.O.N Coalition to purchase banners to be placed on Main Street to promote this event.
Red Ribbon Week began in 1985 by the National Family Partnership. The non-profit organization is dedicated to educating children, teenagers, and parents about the dangers of drugs.
“I urge all citizens to join me by wearing a red ribbon all week to raise awareness about the dangers of drugs and educate others,” said Parsons.
A.C.T.I.O.N. Coalition brings together stakeholders to support a healthy community by strengthening individual and community assets. Parsons’ support of this group began over 12 years ago when he turned what was at the time the mayor’s office and adjoining unused office space at the old city hall over to the Action Coalition led by Trish Burchette.
Parsons concluded by saying, “Giving up that space accounts to over a quarter of a million dollars of in-kind money supporting their efforts. Trish, her staff, and volunteers do a wonderful job of educating our community about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse through special seminars held throughout the year, along with counseling and informational activities. They coordinate highway checkpoints with our police department to reduce the number of drivers who ignorantly think operating a vehicle under the influence is ok.”
Parsons signed the proclamation at the A.C.T.I.O.N. Coalition this past week.
The effort is supported by Johnson County Mayor, Mike Taylor, with an
official declaration in
hopes of increasing awareness, while addressing the rising tide of deaths and the growing burden of the disease of substance use disorders.
ACTION Coalition along with Johnson County Coordinated School Health have planned a number of Red Ribbon Week activities that will be aimed at all members of the community to include school announcements, pledge signings, photo contest (JCHS) in area schools, a red ribbon campaign on Main Street in Mountain City, inserts in local church bulletins, a social media campaign, and more.
Red Ribbon Week will be celebrated in the schools during the week of October 21 – 25.
Action Coalition is urging area residents to “Show
your personal commitment
to a drug-free lifestyle through the symbol of
the Red Ribbon, October 23 – 31.”