Education, mental health officials to students: "Start talking"

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BELPRE, OH-(WTAP) State leaders discuss efforts in preventing opioid abuse among ohio youth.

In advance of Gov. John Kasich's State of the State address, directors of the state education department and the Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services discussed "Start Talking!", Ohio's youth drug intervention program.

They agreed opioid addiction is not a problem confined to one part of the state.

"It is absolutely true that every income, every demographic, every geographic part of Ohio, has been touched by this epidemic," says Director of the Mental Health and Addiction department, Tracy Plouck. "So it really is about all of our families, all of our communities."

The discussion was held at Belpre High School. A 17-year old who was a student there died last summer after a drug overdose.

Wednesday's participants called for student leaders, including athletes, to stand up against drugs.

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