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NOPE Lights Up the Night in Remembrance


SYRACUSE, NY—On October 24, St. Joseph’s Physicians will host a Community Vigil in Syracuse, in unison with communities across the nation, recognizing the Seventh Annual Narcotics Overdose Prevention & Education (NOPE) Task Force Candle Light Vigil.

The NOPE National Candle Light Vigil at 7:00 p.m. in Clinton Square will be held in memory of those who have lost their lives due to drug and alcohol related incidents, and those suffering from the disease of addiction. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, there are 28,000 annual drug-related deaths nationwide, and nearly 60 percent of drug overdose deaths involve prescription drugs.

"The key to drug abuse prevention is community awareness," said Dr. Laura Martin, St, Joseph’s Physicians Prescription Drug Abuse Prevention Committee chairperson. “Misuse of alcohol and illicit drugs is well known, but few realize the immediate and long-lasting consequences from misusing prescription drugs."

St. Joseph’s Physicians believes the destructive forces of addiction—and its impact on families and our community—needs greater visibility. The practice is supporting this vigil to help raise awareness and open doors to recovery by eliminating the prejudice that has followed the disease of addiction.

NOPE Task Force Executive Director Karen Perry adds: “Many lives have been destroyed by substance abuse and the disease of addiction. Too often this disease is perceived as deserved and shameful, leaving families and friends to grieve in silence or an addict alone to struggle to recover. Only through awareness and openness we can eliminate the prejudice that has followed the disease of addiction. The memory of our children, our relatives and our friends who have passed will live on in our hearts, forever honored and memorialized.”

The NOPE Task Force Candle Light Vigil will be held on Thursday, October 24 at 7:00 p.m. in Clinton Square, Downtown Syracuse. To learn more about NOPE Task Force or the Candle Light Vigil, go to www.nopetaskforce.org or contact Betsy Bedigian for more information at (315) 744-1673.

About NOPE Task Force:
NOPE Task Force is a non-profit 501c-3 organization based in West Palm Beach, Fla. providing prevention and educational presentations and forums for schools and communities regarding the dangers of drug use and the deadly consequences of one wrong decision.

About St. Joseph’s Physicians:
St. Joseph’s Physicians is an affiliate of St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center. As the leading comprehensive medical practice in Central New York, St. Joseph’s Physicians incorporates seamlessly integrated practice areas and coordinated ancillary services in convenient locations across Central New York.  St. Joseph’s Physicians includes Family Medicine, Urgent Care, General Surgery, and Women’s Health. For more information, please visit www.sjphysicians.org.