Recently, recovery advocates in our own backyard of Santa Clarita got together to show their support for the national Red Ribbon Campaign. Certainly there are plenty of organizations who make it their mission to battle addiction, but this one is especially unique. Red Ribbon makes a point to highlight the violence that can accompany drug dependencies and, as they put it, the “destructiveness” and collateral damage that using can actually cause.
This mission was launched over 30 years and has drawn the support of some very notable figures (including former First Lady Nancy Reagan). After the 1985 murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena, Red Ribbon came together to honor victims who have lost their lives to drug and alcohol related violence. The simple gesture of wearing a pin captured the attention of the nation and, just like week, drew dozens of people to the Action Family Counseling Center on Soledad Canyon Road.
As we’ve reported before, Santa Clarita has had its struggles with addiction and overdoses. At one point, our city received national attention after an overflow of drug-related emergency room visits. So, the community continues to band together to raise awareness and support sobriety.
“This most recent event was held to bring awareness and education to drug usage in and around our community,” organizer Scott Quashen told reporters from the local Signal newspaper.
This particular Santa Clarita event drew former heroin addicts, social workers, police officials and counselors; all of whom spoke about their experiences with addiction. Proving what a tight-knit group of neighbors we have, SCV Sheriff Station Captain Paul Becker appeared in person and explained how he’s taken the city’s addiction fight down to a personal level.
At the event, Captain Becker went over their station’s Juvenile Team program, which goes to local high schools to speak about drug and alcohol abuse. He also talked about the special “house calls” they make, which work as follow ups for those who have had addiction incidents in the past.
“Rather than arresting, we understand that intervention is a more solution orientated approach to drug usage,” Becker explained to The Signal. “We certainly encourage our officers to take this approach when dealing with certain situations.”
But, as we mentioned before, the primary focus of this meeting was Red Ribbon and honoring those who are no longer with us. Taking a page from their official site, reps shared details about the unique pledge this organization abides by.
- As parents and citizens, we will talk to our children and the children in our lives about the dangers of drug abuse.
- We will set clear rules for our children about not using drugs.
- We will set a good example for our children by not using illegal drugs or medicine without a prescription.
- We will monitor our children’s behavior and enforce appropriate consequences, so that our rules are respected.
- We will encourage family and friends to follow the same guidelines to keep children safe from substance abuse.
You can learn more about Red Ribbon and their pledge, by clicking here.