The collective efforts of local committees and task forces, who are combating the potentially deadly prescription drug abuse crisis, provides me with confidence that we can stop the abuse of pharmaceuticals.
There has been an alarming increase of deadly pharmacy robberies nationwide and it is imperative not to lose sight that a key cause of this problem is chemical dependency addiction.
This type of addiction can make people who otherwise would never behave in this manner, do unspeakable things to get their next fix. While chemical dependency abuse is a disease of addiction, it can be treated and people do recover.
Decreasing access to illicit substances by strengthening laws that make it harder for addicted individuals to fill forged prescriptions or to get an abundance of prescription drugs will help. However, addicted persons will not stop seeking drugs merely because their local pharmacy stops filling their prescriptions. The recent tragedies in Medford and Seaford are examples of the desperate measures that an addicted person may take to obtain a substance that will decrease their craving or help them achieve the state of euphoria they are seeking.
Since 1980, the Make-A-Wish Foundation has enriched the lives of children with life-threatening medical conditions through its wish-granting work. In order for diagnosed children to partake in their wishes (trips to New York City, Disney World, baseball games, flying lessons and more), donations are necessary. Since the organization’s humble beginnings, it has blossomed into a worldwide phenomenon, reaching more than 250,000 children around the world.
Each year, a “Polar Bear Plunge” is hosted in Long Beach to raise money for the Make-A-Wish Foundation. This year, the event is on my 18th birthday, Feb. 5. I thought that instead of receiving gifts, I would give a gift to someone who really needs it. I, Erica Palladino, along with my team, which consists of North Shore Senior Allison Schefer and Junior Erin Sheerin will be running (“plunging”) into the ocean at 1:30 p.m. with hundreds of other people in order to raise money for the awareness of cancer and other threatening diseases. We are all trying to raise money before the big event, and even the smallest donations help.
Nassau County Executive Edward P. Mangano and District Attorney Kathleen Rice have announced that Nassau County’s Prescription Drug Misuse and Abuse Prevention Task Force will partner with InfraGard, an FBI public-private partnership, and the Long Island Pharmacy Crimes Task Force to offer a Pharmacist Security Summit on Feb. 7 from 8:30 to 11:15 a.m. at The Morrelly Homeland Security Center in Bethpage.
“Prescription drug abuse has reached epidemic proportions nationwide. In Nassau County, we have felt firsthand the devastating effects of prescription drug abuse and will therefore take the lead in addressing this epidemic by implementing safety, awareness and educational initiatives for the public as well as local pharmacists,” stated Mangano.
“The rise in prescription drug abuse and the increasing boldness of addicts searching for a new source of pills makes this security summit a must-attend event for every Nassau County pharmacy,” Rice said. “It is incumbent upon law enforcement to provide whatever training, advice, and support we can to pharmacists and their employees.”
Assemblyman Charles Lavine announced his co-sponsorship of the Internet System for Tracking Over-Prescribing (I-STOP) Act. The legislation will establish a controlled substance reporting system by setting up an online, real-time database and would provide health care practitioners and pharmacists with centralized information to avoid over-prescribing. The bill will provide law enforcement with a powerful tool to combat prescription drug-related crimes during a time in which it has reached epidemic proportions.
According to a report released by Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, the number of prescriptions written for narcotic painkillers in New York State increased by 36 percent between the years 2007 and 2010. The increase mirrors a growing crime wave of pharmacy robberies, a threat all too real as more of these tragic events occur in Long Island communities and across the state.
Dear North Shore Residents,
We have all been very disheartened by and concerned about the incidents of racist and anti-Semitic vandalism and graffiti that have occurred within our community during the past few weeks. Clearly, this is an issue for our entire community to address, however, I do believe since the schools stand at the very center of our community, those of us at the North Shore Schools must take a very strong and proactive stance.
The very essence of the North Shore Schools, captured in our mission statement, is building a community of learners in which respect for one another is paramount.
To my constituents in Nassau County’s 18th Legislative District, (which encompasses Glen Cove, Sea Cliff, Bayville, Locust Valley, Brookville, Glen Head, Greenvale, Jericho and Old Westbury), I want to discuss two items of local significance this week.
I was honored to be involved in a very moving event this past Monday. As hate crimes and racist vandalism have been spreading throughout the metro area and into Nassau County, I was proud of the multi-community response coordinated by Mayor Bruce Kennedy of Sea Cliff. He assembled clergy representing various faiths to stand with residents and their elected officials against intolerance. With recent fire bombings in the city and menorah desecrations in Plainview, it is so important to make a unified statement that our communities do not accept hate.
It is certainly with a tinge of sadness that I move on from the Record Pilot and Anton Community Newspapers. The past few years have been wonderful and I thank you all for reading this paper. It has been a pleasure to get to know all of you, to bring your important issues to light, and to share in your strong sense of community.
I wouldn’t leave at all if I couldn’t find the right replacement, so I am very happy that our longtime reporter, Jill Nossa, is moving into the position. Jill is a Glen Cove resident and has covered many community events as well as complex planning board, zoning board, school board and city council meetings. I look forward to reading her Record Pilot and feel good knowing that we are all in good hands.
While it is true that the issues related to hydraulic fracturing or “fracking” are not simple we should not be influenced by much of the misinformation that has been disseminated and we should base our decisions on the facts and develop a regulatory regime which can assure safety and environmental sensitivity.
It is ironic that natural gas development, which can reduce carbon emissions by a third compared to oil and a half compared to coal, is caught in an emotional debate over environmental impacts. As businessman and publisher Mortimer Zuckerman pointed out in a recent Wall Street Journal op-ed, using data from the U.S. Energy Information Agency, this abundant new gas source has reduced our oil imports from 60 percent in 2005 to 47 percent today. Recent events in the Middle East should reinforce the need for a U.S. energy policy based on domestic natural gas.
From our Relay For Life family to you and yours – wishing you a healthy and happy holiday season and a world with more birthdays in 2012!
We are proud to announce that in 2011, your support and generosity helped make the Relay for Life of North Shore the #1 Relay For Life Event in Nassau County raising nearly $125,000 to support the fight against cancer.
As representatives of many voices in the breast cancer community on Long Island, our coalition urges Governor Cuomo to ban hydraulic fracturing (fracking) in New York State since 25 percent of chemicals used in the fracking process have been demonstrated to cause cancer or mutations. Hydrofracking companies use products containing 13 different known and suspected carcinogens. Two of those carcinogens, benzene and ethylene oxide are linked with breast cancer as cited recently by a report released by the Institute of Medicine.
Moreover, 37 percent of chemicals in fracking fluids are endocrine disruptors which alter hormonal signaling and in doing so can place cells on the pathway to tumor formation. Exposure to endocrine-disrupting chemicals has been implicated in cancers of the breast, prostate, pituitary, testicle, and ovary.
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