Leaders hope to curb addiction with drug summit

Leaders hope to curb addiction with drug summit
(Photo source: WLOX)

JACKSON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - Next week, the Attorney General is hosting the Mississippi Drug Summit at Broadmoor Baptist Church in Madison in an effort to curb opioid and heroin addiction in Mississippi.

The FBI and DEA's office recently released the documentary "Chasing the Dragon: The Life of an Opiate Addict" as part of their ongoing effort to combat addiction.

"This past year we've had largest heroin seizures this county ever had within past six to eight months. So, we're starting to see it, but it's not the problem yet some other areas have. Our problem here some of the prescription based meds," said Joe Nicholson with the South Mississippi Metro Enforcement Team.

Although the heroin problem is not as widespread in Jackson County, pain pill addictions can quickly translate into heroin abuse.

"For the first time since I've been doing this, the opiate based drugs have surpassed arrests for cocaine and marijuana; that's never happened," said Nicholson. "We have more prescription pain med type arrests than we did cocaine and marijuana arrests in the last year."

Nicholson believes the pill problem in Jackson County can be attributed in part due to the area being heavily industrial, where people may be injured on the job and treated with opiate-based pain killers.

According to the attorney general, Mississippi ranks fifth in the nation for pain killer prescriptions per capita. The summit is open to the public.

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