Friday, March 23, 2018
Dear Sisters and Brothers:
Our country is in the grips of an opioid epidemic. One in four Americans are directly impacted, whether by having a loved one suffering from addiction or becoming addicted themselves. Our Brotherhood is no different. In fact, the construction industry is among the hardest hit.
The National Safety Council (NSC) has launched “Stop Everyday Killers”, a campaign to educate the public on this national crisis. The website includes a powerful video, as well as educational resources and ways to take action that can be easily shared with our members. Additionally, the NSC is traveling the country with a mobile exhibit, “Prescribed to Death”, that includes a memorial made of pills, each one etched with the image of someone who died from an overdose. To find out when it will be in your area, please visit their website.
This issue is too important to ignore. Drug overdoses are now the leading cause of preventable death for Americans under the age of 50, with an average of 22,000 people dying every year. That’s how many pills you’ll see in the exhibit – 22,000 – the faces of mothers, sons, co-workers – lost to something we could have stopped.
I encourage everyone to visit the exhibit if you can and share this information with our members. By educating ourselves and raising awareness, we can take the necessary steps to stop this epidemic from claiming more lives.
Lonnie R. Stephenson