ORLAND PARK, Ill., March 20, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Heroin use continues to be a growing threat to communities and needs to be checked, community leaders and first responders will argue at a public forum to be held on March 29 in Chicago's Southwest suburbs.
Cook County Commissioner Sean Morrison (17th District), who organized the forum, said speakers will include Broncos offensive guard and Super Bowl Champion Mike Schofield, National Football Players Fathers Association (NFPFA) chairman Curtis Randal EL, first responders with experience treating drug overdoses as well as survivors of extreme drug use.
Hosted by the Orland Fire Protection District, the forum is titled "In The Blink of an Eye" and speaks to students and young people about the impact and consequences of drug use. Students will hear real-life experiences and discuss decision-making skills to resist the social pressures of drug use and addiction, organizers said.
"There is a growing recognition of the threat that drug use has on our young people, especially those who are in our schools," said Morrison whose county board committee memberships include Criminal Justice, and Health and Hospitals.
"I think young people are impacted when they hear people who treat drug use and who have survived drug use. This is a problem that cuts across our society from school students to athletes who find themselves using drugs to treat painful injuries."
The forum will be held at the MAX McCook Athletic & Exposition located in the Village of McCook, co-sponsored by County Board Commissioners Jeff Tobolski and Richard Boykin.
"Heroin, Opioids, Fentanyl use and drug overdoses are at increasing at epidemic speed," said Fire Chief Schofield.
"The Orland Fire District has been addressing this issue since 2009. We were one of the first in the area to bring attention to this growing epidemic in drug use, especially the use of Heroine."
Schofield said the district has worked with Morrison and his predecessor Liz Gorman to make Narcan, an antidote to Heroin Overdoses, available to first responders including police.
The NFPFA and Denver Broncos Mike Schofield are trying to reach young athletes and kids to talk about this issue, and show concern for their futures. We would also challenge all pro teams to pick 1 game in 2017 and wear the Red ribbon of Drug abuse awareness.
Randal EL's son Antwaan Randel El played for the Pittsburgh Steelers wining Super XL. Schofield's father Michael Schofield is the Fire Marshall of the Orland Fire Protection District, which is hosting the public forum.
Real life presentations will focus on the extreme dangers of drug use, specifically the heroin/opioid epidemic which has taken hold throughout many parts of the country as well as right here in the Chicagoland area. Students will also hear about the dangerously high safety risk of texting and driving which has now reached the same dangerous level of drinking and driving.
In addition to the presentations, representatives from the Brookfield Zoo, the Chicagoland Regional College Program and the Forest Preserve District of Cook County will be on-hand to discuss job and internship opportunities with student attendees.
This free event will be held on Wednesday, March 29 from 7:00pm to 8:30pm Central Time at the MAX McCook Athletic & Exposition located in the Village of McCook.
High school students and their families from the south and southwest suburbs of Cook County along with the west side of Chicago have been invited to attend this free special event.
"It is our hope that this special event will convey a lasting message and provide insight to students of the importance of making the right decisions in their young lives," said Commissioner Morrison.
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SOURCE Orland Fire Protection District