The Opioid Work Group and the Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition of Alexandria (SAPCA) distributed 382 free locking medicine boxes through ALIVE! food distributions between June 1 and July 15.
The boxes are an initiative of Lock and Talk Virginia, a collaborative community suicide prevention program locally coordinated by the Suicide Prevention Alliance of Northern (SPAN) Virginia. The program also distributes free firearm trigger and cable locks.
“Lock and Talk promotes the importance of limiting access to lethal means for a person with suicidal thoughts. The program teaches anyone how to have conversations that can save lives using a variety of evidence-based skills trainings,” says Noraine Buttar, the City of Alexandria Youth Development Team Leader who serves as Alexandria’s representative on SPAN’s Advisory Board. “Talking encourages people with thoughts of suicide to seek the help they need to stay alive, and public discussions about suicide open the door to hope and recovery.”
The Opioid Work Group is a multi-agency partnership composed of representatives from a range of city services and community partners that take a multi-dimensional approach to attacking the opioid crisis.
SAPCA provides the boxes to ALIVE!, whose volunteers hand them out at food distribution sites. SAPCA is an alliance of parents, youth, schools, city health and recreation agencies, media, nonprofits, businesses, policymakers and law enforcement with the mission to engage the community in collaborative, cross-cultural and comprehensive substance abuse prevention efforts to reduce underage substance use and abuse in the City of Alexandria. View or sign up for the coalition’s monthly newsletter to learn more about their ongoing events and initiatives.
Alexandria residents and employees can obtain the free locking devices at the Alexandria Health Department and two Department of Community and Human Services locations: 4480 King Street (2nd and 5th Floors) or 2525 Mt. Vernon Avenue.