LouisvilleKY Metro joining in Urban League Forum on Opioid Crisis Monday

Louisville, KY., – The Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness will take part in a public forum tonight about the community’s response to the national opioid crisis.  The free event, which is sponsored by the Louisville Urban League, will be held at the organization’s headquarters at 1535 W Broadway from 6 to 7:30 p.m. tonight.

Public Health’s Wayne Crabtree will outline the goals and progress thus far of Louisville’s two-year action plan to address substance use disorder, Coming Together for  Hope, Healing and Recovery, which Mayor Greg Fischer unveiled in March.

The plan is the product of a community-wide effort that included people in recovery, leaders of nonprofits, law enforcement, health care institutions, experts of social work, school officials, concerned parents and scholars. The report makes specific evidence-based recommendations to be implemented over the next two years. It proposes new initiatives and advocates for expanding and strengthening programs already in place that are proving to be effective.

During Monday’s meeting, Elizabeth Stearman, Director of Behavioral Health Services for Anthem KY Medicaid, will unveil What’s Up With Opioids?, a free online toolkit designed specifically to help non-profits, faith-based groups, parents and others keep their communities safe by preventing opioid misuse and addiction,  especially among young adults.

City of Louisville skyline

What’s Up With Opioids was created by Anthem, Inc. and the National Urban League, with a grant from the Anthem Foundation, to deliver a free workshop kit with ready-to-use tools and a step-by-step guide for hosting a discussion to help prevent opioid misuse and addiction in local communities. The kit features resources designed to help young people learn about opioids, risk factors, warning signs and strategies to prevent misuse. It includes a 2-minute video, easy-to-use slide deck with talking points, turn-key promotional materials, and tips for including an expert community panel to address questions.

“Forums like this are a great way to keep our two-year action plan, Coming Together for Hope, Healing and Recovery, before the public and to report on the progress we are making,” said Dr. Sarah Moyer, director of the Louisville Metro Department of Public Health and Wellness. “The Louisville Urban League has been a valued partner in creating the plan and continues to be a valued partner in implementing it.”

Sadiqa Reynolds, President and CEO of the Louisville Urban League said, “We must continue to reach out to the community with tools like What’s Up With Opioids to prevent our young people from falling into the web of substance misuse.  We must also continue to work to implement the goals outlined in Coming Together for Hope, Healing and Recovery to lessen the burden of substance use disorder in our community.”