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YOUR SIDE: The Readers Take Over

Family of Melissa Horning grateful for fundraiser support

To the editor:

The family of Melissa Horning would like to take this opportunity to thank everybody who participated in any way in the spaghetti dinner fundraiser for her on Oct. 2 at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 892. We were simply overwhelmed by the response and the kindness expressed from strangers, friends and family.

A special thank you goes to the employees and management of Blossom Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, especially Melissa Boughner, Jennifer Truex, Diane Hughes, Cathy Stratton, Gloria Ostrander, Cory Ostrander, Caley Callihan, Christina Drenski, Melissa Mossor, Cheryl Hatala, Debra Shasteen, Joanne Orechoneg, Roy Huffman, Heather Powlowski, Brittany Cramer, Robyn Donnalley, Terri Graffius, Carissa Ream and Nichole Johnson; and also to Helen Quetot, Rebekah Dillard and Mary Huffman.

We especially want to thank Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 892 for the use of its facility, the Salem Giant Eagle for donating cakes; Gia Russa for providing the pasta, sauce and meatballs, dinner rolls from Schwebel’s; and musical entertainment by Hair Supply.

Baskets for the Chinese auction were generously donated by Blossom Activities, Blossom MDS, Blossom Dietary Staff, Diane Hughes, Susan Callatone, Grace Monigold, Bonnie Welling, Lori Rusyn, Bob Viencek, Salem News employees, J.D. Creer, Patriot Home Health, Care 4 Me Home Care, Pizza Hut, First Light Home Care, Polished Nails, Huntington Bank, Columbiana Buick, Salem Sparkle and Lemon Tree, Marco’s Pizza, Hospice of the Valley, Autozone, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Angela Davenport, Melissa Pagan, Annette Jermolenko, Wendy Stumperth and anonymous donors. The baskets were beautiful and we thank you.

Shawn, Kyle and Kameron,  Melissa’s husband and sons;

and her mother, Bekkee Panezott,

Salem

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Healthier Community Pantry available for local residents

To the editor:

According to the Health and Hunger in America 2014 report presented by Feeding America, over half (58 percent) of the households that access food pantries have at least one member with high blood pressure. One-third of the households have a member with diabetes, and more than three in four households (79 percent) reported purchasing inexpensive, unhealthy foods to make ends meet.

Health disparities are more common among low income areas as well as in Appalachian communities. Columbiana County lies within the Appalachian region and according to Ohio Development Office of Research, 38.8 percent of the county population have incomes at or below 200 percent of the federal poverty guidelines and many children qualify for free or reduced lunches in our local schools.

Those struggling with food insecurity face the burden of not only getting enough to eat, but also accessing nutrient-rich foods that promote health and help reduce risk of chronic illness.

The Community Action Agency of Columbiana County Inc. recently opened the Healthier Community Pantry at 7860 Lincole Place, Lisbon. The food pantry offers low income households healthier food options that include whole grains, lean protein items, gluten free products, organic items, and products that are low in fat, sodium, and sugar. They are encouraging patrons with food allergies and chronic illnesses to choose healthy food for themselves by providing them with alternative healthy items when they must turn to a food pantry for assistance.

As the holidays are approaching, and many reach out to help those in need, I ask that you consider donating healthier food items to the local pantries in Columbiana County. For more information on how to donate to the Community Action Healthier Community Pantry, call 330-424-4013. Let’s work together to not only make it a happy holiday season but also a healthy one.

ALYSSA GRIMM,

Lisbon

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Some suggestions for dealing with addictions

To the editor:

We all have loved ones who make decisions that we don’t agree with. But what if your loved one was addicted to prescription opioids or heroin? Obviously if they were to overdose you would want them to get naloxone, also known as Narcan, to help them survive their overdose.

Would you want them to get saved and then let back out into the world that almost killed them? I’m guessing that you would say no. So, with heroin being such a hot topic, lets discuss it. According to the Ohio Department of Health, in 2015 overdose deaths in Ohio had reached 3,050. Which was an increase from 2014, which was at 2,531. This rate has been steadily increasing though out the years. There are many people suffering with drug addiction problems and we are finally moving in the right direction and having Narcan more readily available for the worst case scenario. But we need to think about after the fact. It’s great that we can save people from near death but what about saving them from getting into this position in the first place or helping them with life after an overdose?

I want to propose two ideas. My first idea is to focus on the problem at hand. People are doing drugs that are easily available to them. Heroin is all over this area, as well as other drugs. We need to focus on bringing down the people who are bringing this garbage into our neighborhoods and communities. We need to have a stronger drug task force across the United States or possibly stronger boarder control to prevent it from coming into our country. We need to try to catch the people who are passing these drugs out to our citizens. If we can break the chain at the top then we will have fewer drugs available for the streets.

My second idea is that if someone were to overdose, we do not let them go back to normal life right after. I believe that if we give Narcan to someone and save their life then there should be an automatic inpatient rehab sentence. There is no sense in pumping people with Narcan day in and day out without doing something to actually help stop the problem we are facing. This is something that we need and we need more governmental help.

According to the Ohio Department of Health, in Ohio we spent on average $5.4 million a day on medical and work loss costs resulting from drug overdoses in 2012. So I propose that if we give Narcan, then that person goes straight to rehab to help stop their addiction. I’m sure that there will be people trying to escape from rehab. There should be a repercussion to this. Maybe a one-year jail sentence would be needed if this happened. Using unprescribed drugs is illegal, and if someone were to escape from a place that is only trying to help them then they may need to go to a place with higher security while keeping their sobriety.

This is all food for thought. We are moving in the right direction with trying to help the drug epidemic we are having but maybe we need to step back and look at the bigger picture. We may be fighting the wrong battle in a much larger war.

Works Cited: Drug Overdose in Ohio. (2016, August 25). Retrieved October 24, 2016, from http://www.healthy.ohio.gov/vipp/drug/dpoison.aspx. Illicit Fentanyl Continues to Fuel Increase in Drug Overdose Deaths in Ohio. (2016, August 25). Retrieved October 25, 2016, from https://www.odh.ohio.gov/-/media/HealthyOhio/ASSETS/Files/injury-prevention/News-Release—-2015-Drug-Overdose-Data-Final.pdf

SANDRA STERCHI,

Girard

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