A community forum moderated by former Lakeville Police Chief Tom Vonhof is scheduled to discuss combating heroin and opioid abuse and will be held March 13 from 6:45-8:30 p.m. at Lakeville City Hall, 20195 Holyoke Avenue.
The event will include information from an addiction specialist, Dakota County Attorney James Backstrom, a Lakeville police officer and a recovering heroin addict.
Resources for prevention and treatment will be available in the City Hall lobby prior to the event start, from 6-6:45 p.m.
Statistics show more than 70 percent of heroin users start out by using prescription pain medications. Opioid and heroin use has become an epidemic in America. In the U.S., with only 5 percent of the world’s population, we consume 80 percent of the world’s opioid painkillers.
More than 325 people died in Minnesota in 2015 as a result of heroin and opiate pain relievers, 23 of them from Dakota County, and the numbers continue to rise. The fastest growing group of heroin users is young, middle class men and women from the suburbs.
The event will be recorded and broadcast live. It is sponsored by the Lakeville Rotary in partnership with Lakeville Police, Lakeville Area Public Schools and Dakota County Attorney’s Office.