The Crisis Center, located in Odessa but extending to various counties in Region 9, opened up a new shelter in Ft. Stockton in the summer of 2016. The shelter is currently operational and services victims of sexual and domestic abuse in need of housing, employment, education, safety and goal planning, and more.
Medication Take Back Boxes
On May 31 of 2016, Ector County celebrated their two-year anniversary for the Medication Drop Box located at the Odessa Police Department. Over 110 pounds of medication were collected in the past year alone at the Odessa Police Department. There is also a Medication Drop Box at the Ector County Sheriff’s Department.
On November 19 of 2016, San Angelo celebrated the four-year anniversary of their Medication Drop Box located at the San Angelo Police Department. The Alcohol & Drug Abuse Council for the Concho Valley started the program in 2012 with the Concho Valley C.A.R.E.S. Coalition, collecting over 200 prescriptions last year.
Medical Center Health System (MCH) also started a medication take back program via drive-thru under the MCH Sky Bridge in Odessa last year. MCH has had great success with their medicine takeback, and provide meetings for the program during the second Wednesday of each month from 4-5pm.
Social Host Ordinances
The H2i coalition is working to get an Odessa social host ordinance passed to reduce underage drinking. It is important that parents understand that providing alcohol to teenagers is against the law and fining them maybe to the best way to get the message across. The ordinance will make it easier for law enforcement to execute existing laws regarding underage drinking, as well as create a cultural distinction that underage drinking must be eliminated for the overall health of Odessa residents and surrounding communities.
San Angelo also passed a city-wide ordinance banning the sale of synthetic marijuana within city limits in 2010. The City of Odessa implemented a similar ordinance in October 2013 banning the sale of synthetic marijuana in city limits. These bans have been instrumental in closing down local retailers selling the product within the city and the users from purchasing the product.
Initiatives have been created across regional college campuses in order to make their educational spaces smoke-free. In the past year, there has been significant political and social momentum to make the five colleges and universities within Region 9 tobacco-free campuses, and the University of Texas-Permian Basin successfully fulfilled that initiative. As of August 2016, UTPB is considered a smoke-free campus.
Odessa College has been collecting data through 2015 and 2016 regarding perceptions of smoking on campus. The Tobacco Use Policy Task Force is presenting the data in the fall of 2016 to the Odessa College Board of Trustees. The goal of the Task Force is to consider a policy that is respectful to tobacco and non-tobacco users. There currently are no designated smoking areas on campus, but people cannot smoke in campus buildings, and with enough political and social momentum Odessa College could be the next smoke-free campus in Region 9.
Detoxification, Mental Health, and Sobriety Efforts
The Alcohol & Drug Abuse Council for the Concho Valley held a “groundbreaking” for its new detox center expansion in March of 2016. The expansion project — called The Journey Recovery Center — will add residential detox services to accommodate up to 12 clients, and help ADACCV consolidate its residential treatment services to one location and double its capacity by providing 30 treatment beds for men and 18 for women. Construction of the center, in the 3200 block of U.S. 277, near the Roy K. Robb Facility in San Angelo, is set to begin this fall. More information can be found on ADACCV’s new website: adaccv.org.
In 2015, the Palmer Drug Abuse Program in Midland anticipated 1,093 individual appointments, but actually held 1,288 actual appointments to successfully complete a 30-day plan of sobriety. Success rates were high in 2015 for PDAP, as 953 individuals achieved and completed the program.
Oceans Behavioral Health center located in Midland County recently opened their doors to adolescents facing mental health issues. As of April 2015, another 2 beds were added for in-patient treatment for adolescents. This reflects the Dallas Business Journal report that cites Oceans Healthcare as one of the 50 fastest-growing middle market companies in North and West Texas.
By Kevin Thompson Regional Evaluator Prevention Resource Center- Region 9 firstname.lastname@example.org
Published August 5, 2016.