Debate Over Sale of Drug Paraphernalia

An increasing number of Minnesota cities are considering or have passed ordinances to prohibit the sale of drug paraphernalia. Store owners who sell bongs, cocaine spoons and other items have challenged these laws in court. The City of Red Wing expects that its new ordinance will be tested. However, local law enforcement and community coalitions often feel that these ordinances protect the public because the items promote drug use. For more on Red Wing’s ordinance, click here. Stillwater is also considering an ordinance, available here. While we are not aware of any distributors of drug paraphernalia in Kanabec County, a store recently opened in Pine City.

Take Back Initiatives Turn to Permanent Collections

Prescription drug take-back events in Washington County, MN have led to a permanent collection box at the Sheriff’s Office! The program is expected to cost $18,000 per year and will be funded by the County’s waste disposal fees. The proper disposal of prescription and over-the-counter medications will both prevent substance use and protect the environment. For more about Washington County’s program, click here. Approximately 60 lbs. of medication were collected at Kanabec County’s first National Prescription Drug Take-Back Day last year. If you are interested in helping establish a permanent collection box in Kanabec County, contact Lori Swanson.

Kanabec County Schools Make Strides in Bullying Prevention

Mora and Ogilvie schools have partnered with Drug-Free Communities (DFC) to implement the Olweus Bullying Prevention Program (OBPP). This program is will be used with students in grades K-12 both in the classroom and elsewhere on school grounds. A community-level component will reach out to parents and the community for involvement and support. All school staff will be responsible for the use of the program. These efforts are designed to improve peer relations and make school a safer and more positive place for students to learn and develop.

Substance Abuse Prevention Specialist Training (SAPST)

Sara Rossow (Mora Schools), Patricia Beneze (Family Pathways) and Karla Filibeck (Public Health) attended a week-long training in St. Cloud in March to become Certified Prevention Specialists. Several other SACK coalition members have attended in the past. The training provides an overview of the history of prevention, current research, theories and practical approaches such as the Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF). For more information on SAPST offerings, click here.

April SACK Meeting

More than twenty members attended SACK’s monthly coalition meeting at FirstLight on April 3rd! Topics included the history of prevention in Kanabec County, the coalition’s new structure, current funding sources and the Strategic Prevention Framework (SPF). Members identified 130 organizations or individuals to approach about SACK’s work! Local data sources were also identified and will be explored by the coalition’s up-and-coming Epidemiological Workgroup. Meeting minutes are available on the SACK website or by clicking here.

2012 Spring ATOD Forum

Karla Filibeck and Lori Swanson (Public Health) attended the Spring ATOD Forum in Roseville on April 10th. This year’s theme is Bullying Research and Interventions: Connecting the Dots of Behaviors and Experiences. There are multiple opportunities to attend sessions statewide, and a list of upcoming dates and locations can be found here. Contact Karla or Lori if you would like to attend a future session or access the materials shared at the conference.