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TDMHSAS Funds Five New Community Anti-Drug Coalitions

Network of local addiction prevention groups expands to 46 organizations statewide
Thursday, December 13, 2018 | 10:26am

NASHVILLE—The Tennessee Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (TDMHSAS) is adding five new community anti-drug coalitions to its statewide network.  Coalitions provide information, coordinate resources, and conduct education events with the goal of preventing addiction in their communities.

“Our coalitions are amazing groups of energized people who make a positive impact in their communities.  They’re uniquely positioned to identify the resources that are available, sense the needs of their communities, and react appropriately,” said Marie Williams, TDMHSAS Commissioner.

Governor Haslam’s TN Together program is providing the new funding for community anti-drug coalitions in Carroll, Claiborne, Cumberland, Loudon, and Maury counties.  The addition raises the total number of TDMHSAS-funded coalitions to 46.  Based on the population in the covered areas, more than 75% of Tennesseans have a coalition in their county.

“These new coalitions are mostly in rural areas of the state where resources can be tough to access, but we find there’s a sense of community in many of our rural areas that enables coalition leaders to bring stakeholders to the table and increase their collective impact,” said Anthony Jackson, Jr. TDMHSAS Director of Prevention and Early Intervention Services.

All coalitions work toward the goals of decreasing non-medical use of pain relievers such as opioid medications and preventing underage drinking and tobacco use.  Many coalitions also hold events in support of National Prescription Drug Take Back Day which is coordinated nationally by the Drug Enforcement Administration.  During the most recent take back day in Tennessee, organizers collected more than 33,000 pounds of medications.

To learn more or get involved with one of the TDMHSAS Community Anti-Drug Coalitions, visit this link.