Fighting back against drug addiction

Balloons are released representing loved ones lost to or fighting substance addiction, as well as their family members affected by the abuse, at the Ohio CAN (Change Addiction Now) rally at Salem’s Waterworth Memorial Park Saturday afternoon. The event featured a walk, gathering of shoes representing those lost to drugs, speeches about the drug problem and information about getting help. The event was the first of several rallies scheduled by the state affiliate of United We CAN. The next event, Light of Hope, is slated for Sept. 30 and calls for a lighting of lights for those lost and struggling with drug addiction. The purpose of the events is to raise awareness, educate, eliminate the stigma and save lives regarding substance abuse, according to Cindy Koumoutzis, state director and founding member of United We CAN. “We want to get the community involved because without involvement- everybody’s involvement- our voices won’t be heard,” she said. (Salem News photo by Kevin Howell)