Raising awareness about illicit drugs

Raising awareness about illicit drugs
Posted on 10/23/2018
Image of safety alert sign

Napanee District Secondary School is working closely with Napanee OPP, KFL&A Public Health and Addictions and Mental Health Services KFL&A to raise awareness about the dangers of illicit (non-prescription) drugs circulating in our community.

During the past two weeks, the school has dealt with instances of students having serious reactions and/or overdosing (non-fatal) on counterfeit Xanax. While the school and emergency services have been able to intervene and provide timely interventions and care to those affected, we are concerned for the ongoing safety and well-being of our students.

Xanax, when prescribed by a doctor, is a safe and effective treatment for some anxiety and panic disorders. Students are reminded that taking drugs not prescribed to them, is also dangerous. The information we have received from police is that the drugs circulating in our community are counterfeit and may contain fentanyl or other opiates which can cause serious and even life-threatening conditions.

Today, October 23, school administration visited all classes to share this important information with students. We care deeply for our students and want to ensure they have factual information and access to supports as needed.

Students are encouraged to look out for each other and report any situations, to school staff or other trusted adults, especially where students might find themselves in danger or distress. Further, should students find themselves in need of interventions to support their mental health and well-being, we urge them to reach out to their parents/guardians, primary health-care providers or school staff for help.

Further, students in possession of illicit drugs, such as counterfeit Xanax, are encouraged to dispose of the drugs at a “safe drop-off zone” located at Wallace’s PharmaChoice Drug Store in Napanee. Drugs can be deposited there anonymously, with no fear of repercussion between Mon-Fri 9 a.m.-9 p.m., Monday to Friday, 9 a.m.-5 p.m., Saturday and 11 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday.

We encourage all families to have open and honest conversations with their children about this important issue. Parents and guardians should ensure any unused or expired prescription medication is disposed of safely by returning it to your local pharmacy. Further, Naloxone kits, which block or reverse the effects of opioid medications, are available free of charge at any pharmacy. All secondary schools are also equipped with Naloxone kits.

If you have information regarding the sale of illicit drugs in the community, you are encouraged to share that information with police. Anonymous tips can be made to Crime Stoppers at 1-800-222-8477 (TIPS) or on the website at Tipsters are eligible for a cash reward of up to $2,000.

Please do not hesitate to call the school should you have any questions or concerns.

Resources for families and students: