The Siskiyou County Sheriff’s Office, Siskiyou County Behavioral Health Services, and City of Dunsmuir will host a Drug Awareness Town Hall on Tuesday, June 12, at 6 p.m. The event will be conducted for up to three hours in the Dunsmuir Community Center, 4835 Dunsmuir Avenue, next to the baseball field and Botanical Gardens entrance, near the locomotive.

The following information is from a June 8 Sheriff's Office news release announcing the event:

The town hall is for all citizens, students, school officials, faculty members, faith-based community, parents, city and county officials, business owners, employers, and anyone interested in positive messages that help prevent alcohol or drug abuse, bullying or other forms of potentially harmful behavior, especially involving youth.

Sheriff Jon Lopey will present an update on challenges facing the county with illicit marijuana. He will provide an update on health, social, justice, and environmental concerns.

Behavioral Health Specialist John Crovelle will give his “Keeping it Real” drug prevention presentation, which he frequently presents to high school students throughout Siskiyou County. Crovelle is involved in the Athlete Committed Program, and he emphasizes a prevention message that is based on the premise that youth are perceptive young adults and when they have a greater perception of harm, they tend to make better choices in life. He discusses alcohol and drug abuse, tobacco use, and he stresses healthy imperatives such as proper rest, diet, and hydration.

Another presentation will be conducted by 40-year law enforcement veteran and DARE Deputy (Drug Abuse Resistance Education) David Nye. Deputy Nye has been teaching the DARE program in local schools for many years and the Sheriff’s Office, in partnership with BHS, has been conducting DARE prevention classes in various parts of the county, including Fort Jones, Montague, Dunsmuir, and McCloud. DARE presentations will be expanded next school year to other schools. Deputy Nye is a retired SCSO Deputy Sheriff and was previously a long-time member of the Concord Police Department in the Bay Area. He is considered one of the best DARE instructors in the state. DARE teaches many drug, alcohol, and tobacco prevention strategies but also teaches kids, mostly at the elementary school level, to avoid other unhealthy and unsavory behaviors, including bullying.

The idea for the Drug Awareness Town Hall arose from a recent Dunsmuir Community Care Committee meeting, which is conducted monthly at the Dunsmuir Family Resource Center. Law enforcement, service club representatives, city officials, school faculty members, DRC workers, and many other social services and behavioral health practitioners have been attending the meetings, and it was decided such a drug awareness and prevention endeavor in Dunsmuir could prove beneficial to the community.

The town hall program will include time for questions from the audience. The goal of the town hall is to promote awareness and to positively influence adults and adolescents and ultimately, to build more healthy and more resilient communities.

According to Sheriff Lopey, “Mayor Bruce Deutsch coordinated this event and we are grateful that there is so much synergy, passion, and interest in drug prevention in the city and with the participants of the Dunsmuir Community Care Committee. Mr. Mike Rodriguez, District Administrator, Mount Shasta Recreation and Parks, also helped Mayor Deutsch secure the venue site for the event. Mr. Crovelle and Deputy Nye are great instructors and all attendees will gain knowledge and a better understanding of drug, alcohol, and unhealthy lifestyle prevention strategies being employed in the schools. The Sheriff’s Office has a great partnership with BHS and they have provided funding for the DARE program. The marijuana presentation will update citizens on current challenges facing Siskiyou County related to illegal marijuana activities on private and public lands. We would like to invite everyone interested in drug prevention and healthier communities to attend the town hall.”

There will be more drug prevention town halls conducted in other parts of the county in the future. Should you have any questions about the event, please contact Sheriff Jon Lopey at (530) 842-8310, or Mr. John Crovelle, BHS, at (530) 841-4772.