North country substance abuse programs getting $3M for drug prevention

North country substance abuse programs getting $3M for drug prevention

WATERTOWN, N.Y. (WWNY) - Two north country substance abuse programs will each be getting $1.5 million over the next five years from the Department of Health and Human Services.

The Alcohol and Substance Abuse Council of Jefferson County, known as PIVOT, will use that money to help with drug prevention programs in the Watertown, Belleville-Henderson, and Lafargeville school districts.

Five new positions will be created to help with the programs.

Bill Bowman of PIVOT says a task force will also be developed in those communities to help create new programs.

"It's huge, it's fantastic. You can see the drug problem that we have in our communities. That doesn't happen overnight - the opioid epidemic we are facing. Really we are facing a dual pandemic in this country. This will be a great shot in the arm to really help us to provide prevention early on, long before children start using, so hopefully we can prevent the problem from happening later on," he said.

The Police Activities League of Massena will be using their $1.5 million to expand after school drug prevention in the Massena Central School District. They too will be hiring 5 people to help with their programs.

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