Tall Cop came to town last week.
Jermaine Galloway who has spent the past 15 years delivering valuable information on how to impact underage drinking and drug abuse among youth to communities across the nation made a stop in Newaygo County to help spread the word on the latest drug trends.
Over 200 people attended the presentation including school and hospital personnel, law enforcement. social workers and lots and lots of parents.They came to learn about those recent trends in the world of youth drug and alcohol abuse and from the reaction of the crowd they came away with an increased awareness of the subtleties and intricacies involved in the drug culture.
In addition to the presentation a mock room was set up to help demonstare hidden clues that might indicate drug usage and clothing used innthe drug culture was on display as well.
“The event had a great turn out!”said Rachel Uganski Project Coordinator of the Drug Free Communities. “It really demonstrated how much the Newaygo County community cares about their kids.”
“Understanding the latest trends is key to preventing substance abuse for youth in Newaygo County. Prevention starts at home. Parents have the ability to talk often with their kids about the risks. Parents also have the ability to limit access to prescription drugs, tobacco, and alcohol in their homes”
The biggest takeaway?
“How vigilant we have to be in making sure our kids are safe from substance abuse. Drug Trends are constantly changing. You must know what you are looking for, the drug culture makes devices and substances discrete to evade detection.”
Sponsored by Great Start Collaborative, Newaygo County Families Against Narcotics, and the Headway Coalition and held at NCRESA’s RCASCA site, the program helped to make attendance easier for parents by offering a free dinner as well as free child care.
Newaygo County Undersheriff Chad Palmiter has been involved with the Headway Coalition prevention efforts for many years and was pleased at the number of community members who took the time to attend the event.
“This was a great presentation for parents and families to learn about these trends, the way they are being used, and how the are constantly changing. Sometimes we tend to push these problems off, believing they affect only other areas of the state or country, however these issues occur right in our backyard and need to be taken seriously.”
Concerned about local substance abuse issues in our community? Contact Headway at 231.652.3619 or via email at email@example.com.
They also have a facebook page.
The sponsoring organizations would like to thank the following organizations for their help in making this presentation possible:
White Cloud Church of God Ministry Center– for providing the cookies
Sui Generis Home Furniture – Mock Room Set Up
NC RESA – Technical support, and space
Food Provided by:
Mid-State Health Network
Fraternal Order of Police
Newaygo County Families Against Narcotics
Great Start Collaborative
Gerber Memorial’s new urology practice is now open
FREMONT – Max Rizer, DO, a board-certified physician specializing in urology, has begun serving patients at Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial. He will be at Gerber Memorial two days a week, Wednesdays and Thursdays. For the remainder of the week, Dr. Rizer will be at Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital.
“Spectrum Health Gerber Memorial is excited to welcome Dr. Max Rizer to Newaygo County and bring his expertise in urology to our community so our patients can get quality care close to home,” said Randy Kelley, Gerber Memorial president. “Dr. Rizer’s addition to our team of professional health providers is another way Gerber Memorial strives to meet the needs of our patients and the families we serve.”
Dr. Rizer earned his medical degree from Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in East Lansing. He completed his general surgery residency at Ingham Regional Medical Center in Lansing, Michigan and his urology residency at Michigan State University/Ingham Regional Medical Center in East Lansing.
His clinical interests include urologic problems in men and women, including BPH (enlarged prostate), urinary incontinence, kidney stones, erectile dysfunction, elevated PSA evaluation, hematuria (blood in the urine) evaluation, urinary-related cancers, hydrocele treatment and vasectomy.
Dr. Rizer began at Gerber Memorial on March 6.
For further information, referrals or appointments, please call 231.924.1607.
Got questions about your lake? Want to hear about the options available for lake management?
This Newaygo County Drain Office sponsored event looks to provide a little enligtenment toward helping us all become good stewards of our waterways.
And the price of admission?
Just a desire to obtain clear and accurate information from knowledgeable sources.
Bloomberg Philanthropies Announces $10 Million Investment in Michigan to Help Curb Opioid Overdose Deaths
Michigan, with one of the highest numbers of overdose deaths in the country, will receive funding to accelerate access to treatment and improve prevention efforts as it becomes second state selected for Bloomberg Philanthropies’ $50 million initiative to tackle opioid crisis in the United States.
The latest decline in U.S. life expectancy is tied to a record number of drug and opioid overdose deaths and more people now die from opioid overdose than car crashes.
Bloomberg Philanthropies today announced the next state in its groundbreaking $50 million initiative to combat the nationwide opioid crisis, providing $10 million in support to Michigan to help the state address its fast-rising opioid overdose death rate. Michigan joins Pennsylvania as the first two states selected for this initiative, which comes amid an alarming decline in U.S. life expectancy driven in large part by a massive increase in opioid use nationwide.
Our state ranks eighth in the country in the number of overdose deaths with 2,694 drug overdose deaths in 2017, compared to 2,335 in 2016—a 14 percent increase. Opioids were responsible for more than three-quarters of those drug overdose deaths.
The CDC reports that there were more than 70,000 drug overdose deaths in the United States in 2017, including more than 47,000 from opioid overdoses. These are the highest numbers on record. Today, more than two million people in the United States are addicted to opioids, which are responsible for about 130 deaths in America every day; by comparison, there are approximately 102 deaths in America per day from car crashes.
Bloomberg Philanthropies’ investment will complement the work already underway in Michigan to address the opioid crisis. Projects may include expanding medications for opioid use disorder in settings including prisons and jails, expanding distribution of naloxone, and enhancing systems to improve timely collection of data to help speed response to the crisis.
“The opioid epidemic is one of the greatest health crises of our lifetime, and we need to marshal all forces necessary to fight back,” said Governor Gretchen Whitmer. “The opioid crisis affects nearly every county in Michigan. These funds will help our state advance a comprehensive plan and implement critical interventions that can make the biggest impact to reduce overdose deaths.”
“The opioid crisis is a national emergency that calls for bold leadership and big ideas. Governor Whitmer is committed to reversing the epidemic, and our goal is to support her administration with resources and expertise that can help them save more lives,” said Michael R. Bloomberg, Bloomberg Philanthropies Founder and World Health Organization Global Ambassador for Noncommunicable Diseases. “We hope our work in places like Michigan and Pennsylvania spares more families the heartbreak of losing a loved one to opioid addiction or overdose. And by showing that progress is possible, we can create a model for action that other states and organizations can follow.”
MDHHS outlines plan to improve outcomes for children and families
LANSING– Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) Director Robert Gordon today outlined his agenda to improve outcomes for children and families involved in the state’s child welfare system.
Gordon’s comments came as he and other MDHHS officials appeared in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan to update Judge Nancy G. Edmunds on state efforts to reform its child welfare system.
“We can do better. We must do better. And we will do better,” Gordon said. “Our staff are deeply dedicated to serving children and families in crisis. They need the tools and the systems to succeed. That’s what we must offer them.”
Today’s federal court appearance was the first since Gordon became MDHHS director in January. The court is monitoring the state’s child welfare system under the Implementation, Sustainability and Exit Plan approved in court in February 2016. Federal monitors today discussed their report on the department’s progress for January to December 2017.
That plan took the place of the Modified Settlement Agreement approved in 2011 that came after a lawsuit filed by the advocacy group Children’s Rights in 2006.
The court also received an independent report that detailed continuing issues with the Michigan Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System (MiSACWIS), which MDHHS uses to collect, store, process and produce data related to its federal court commitments. The report from Kurt Heisler Consulting was made public in court.
Gordon outlined several principles for the state’s actions. “We will not defend what we cannot defend,” he said, referring to findings about increased numbers of children who experienced maltreatment while in foster care in 2017. “We will focus on results. We will lead with urgency. And we will use real-time data to improve our practice.”
Despite the limitations of MiSACWIS, Gordon said, the department can begin making better use of data to identify trends and act on the challenges identified in the data. He described work with external experts to improve the use of data.
Jennifer Wrayno, acting executive director of the MDHHS Children’s Services Agency, in court outlined specific measures being undertaken by the department to address challenges facing the state’s child welfare system.
“Child welfare staff from MDHHS and the department’s private partner agencies are doing tremendous work on behalf of children who have been the victims of abuse and neglect and their families,” Wrayno said. “We need to better equip them to address child safety and well-being and find children permanent homes more quickly through reunification with their families or adoption.”
Judge Edmunds stated that while she was concerned about the lack of progress during the reporting period, it is time to move forward.
“It definitely is heartening to hear the jumpstart that the Whitmer administration - in particular Ms. Wrayno and Director Gordon - have undertaken to move forward in these important areas,” she said.
She scheduled a status conference hearing for June 27 to receive an update on progress.
The court monitor report released today showed that Michigan had met requirements for movement of six performance standards in the Implementation, Sustainability and Exit Plan. In two instances, MDHHS met standards for at least two consecutive reporting periods, making those standards eligible for exiting further court oversight. Those standards were related to children in foster care receiving an appropriate education and maintaining continuity in education by keeping the children in a familiar or current school or neighborhood.
In four other instances, MDHHS’s performance sustained progress for at least two consecutive reporting periods. Those standards were related to licensing work qualifications and training, the number of treatment foster home beds, the diagnosis process for administering psychotropic medications to children in foster care and proper oversight of psychotropic medication.
Gordon said he prioritized improving outcomes for children and families over exiting from judicial oversight. “We will not talk about exit today,” he said. “And we will not talk about it in the future unless and until we can demonstrate we are doing better by the children we serve on the things that matter most.”
To view the latest federal court monitor report, the full Implementation, Sustainability and Exit Plan, earlier reports and the original Modified Settlement Agreement, visit www.michigan.gov/ChildWelfareAgreement.
Career fair scheduled for March 27 in Fremont
FREMONT – Area residents looking to find a job or a new line of work are invited to talk with local and regional employers this month to do some career exploration.
The Newaygo County Career-Tech Center (NCCTC) is inviting community members to search for a job that meets their needs and skills during its annual career fair.
The Career-Tech Center’s 2019 Job Fair will be open to the public from 4 to 6 p.m. on Wednesday, March 27, in The Black Box at the Dogwood Center for Performing Arts in Fremont.
“The objective of this event is for employers in these different fields to network with area job-seekers, explain their business and explore opportunities for them to apply for open positions,” said Gretchen Spedowske, Director of Career and Placement Services at NCCTC.
Job-seekers are asked to bring copies of their updated resumes and to be prepared to interview with human resources representatives from local and regional employers. Attendees also are asked to come dressed to impress.
Roughly 20 employers are expected to be in attendance at the event. Employers will be looking for workers in a variety of areas, including Welding, Mechatronics, Heavy Equipment, Construction Trades, Automotive, Agriscience, Cosmetology, Culinary Arts, Graphic Communications, Information Technology, Business Applied Technology, Criminal Justice, Health Sciences and more.
The Hesperia Area Chamber of Commerce, Fremont Area Chamber of Commerce, River Country Chamber of Commerce, The Right Place and Michigan Works! West Central are partnering with the career center in organizing this event. The job fair will be open to NCCTC students during the school day.
“Each year, we look forward to strengthening our relationships with employers through this event,” Spedowske said. “The job fair is an important effort to help NCCTC students and area job-seekers make an impact on the local economy by helping them find work and, in the case of students, kick start their careers.”
For more information about the upcoming NCCTC Job Fair, contact the Newaygo County Career-Tech Center at (231) 924-8814 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources reminds anglers that mandatory ice shanty removal dates are approaching. Regardless of the date, shanties must be removed before the ice is unable to safely support them. In warmer weather, the ice quickly can become unsafe for anglers to retrieve their property.
The deadline for removal from waters in the northern Lower Peninsula is midnight Friday, March 15. Counties in this area include Alcona, Alpena, Antrim, Arenac, Bay, Benzie, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Clare, Crawford, Emmet, Gladwin, Grand Traverse, Iosco, Isabella, Kalkaska, Lake, Leelanau, Manistee, Mason, Mecosta, Midland, Missaukee, Montmorency, Newaygo, Oceana, Ogemaw, Osceola, Oscoda, Otsego, Presque Isle, Roscommon and Wexford.
DNR conservation officers also remind individuals going onto the ice to use extreme caution as temperatures begin to rise in the spring. The repetitive thawing and refreezing of ice weakens its integrity, decreasing its ability to support additional weight from people, snowmobiles, ORVs and shanties. Deteriorating ice, water currents and high winds increase the probability of pressure cracks, which can leave anglers and others stranded on ice floes or at risk of falling through the ice.
For more information, watch the Michigan DNR ice safety tips video.
The Michigan Department of Natural Resources is committed to the conservation, protection, management, use and enjoyment of the state’s natural and cultural resources for current and future generations. For more information, go to Michigan.gov/DNR.
If you or someone you know is seeking valuable experience working in wildlife conservation – or just an interesting job that gets you outdoors – consider applying for one of more than 200 summer and fall positions with the DNR Wildlife Division.
The division regularly hires additional staff to work these seasons at DNR state field offices, customer service centers and state game areas. Seasonal staff helps in several areas, such as:
Some seasonal positions currently are open for application, and more will become available in the spring. Learn more about seasonal positions in the Wildlife Division – and other openings throughout the department – at Michigan.gov/DNRJobs; scroll to the Seasonal and Temporary Positions section.
Questions? Contact Jennifer Schafer at 517-284-6163.
Survey launched to learn residents’ priorities for community
A partnership of health, human services, and community organizations have launched a Community Survey to get input from residents of Northern and Central Michigan about their priorities for improving life in their communities.
The partnership, known as MiThrive, is working to improve the health of communities in Northern/Central Michigan through examining data, finding the key issues, and bringing people together for change. MiThrive is working across the 31 counties of Northern Lower Michigan, from Mt. Pleasant to the Mackinac Bridge.
“The survey is a great chance to share what’s important to you, and the kind of changes you want to see in your community. To guide our work, we need as many responses as possible,’” said Tanya Janes, manager of Community Health & Volunteer Services for McLaren Northern Michigan. “Anyone who lives in Northern/Central Michigan can take the survey. Plus, you can have the chance to win one of five $25 gift cards through a random drawing.”
The Community Survey is based on the findings from a 6-month data collection process last year on important issues in the region. The survey will help narrow down the list of issues to the highest priorities, by finding out what is most important to community residents. Examples of these issues include mental health, meeting basic needs of living, access to healthcare, and social isolation.
“It’s been incredible to see how this project has grown, and how far-reaching interest in this project has been. It’s truly a cross-sector, collaborative endeavor,” said Denise Bryan, Health Officer for District Health Departments #2 and #4, together covering eight counties of Northeast Michigan. “With that kind of regional collaboration, we’ll be able to make significant, sustainable progress for our communities.”
The MiThrive project began in early 2018 with a steering committee of representatives from Munson Healthcare, McLaren Northern Michigan, MidMichigan Health, the seven health departments of the Northern Michigan Public Health Alliance, North Country Community Mental Health, Traverse Health Clinic, Area Agency on Aging of Northwest Michigan, and the Northern Michigan Community Health Innovation Region. Since then, participation in the project has expanded to include all major hospital systems in Northern Lower Michigan, and dozens of other community organizations and stakeholders.
“I’m looking forward to our next steps, after we gain a clear idea of our community members’ priorities,” said Kevin Hughes, Health Officer for District Health Department #10, covering ten counties of West Michigan stretching from Oceana to Crawford counties. “Once we have our priorities, we can set both local and regional goals for change. With support from diverse partners, we’ll be able to create feasible action plans and work for real change on issues that are important to our community members.”
The survey is available now at www.surveymonkey.com/r/MiThrive2019 or on the homepage of www.nwhealth.org. The survey is open through March 14, 2019. To get more information about MiThrive, or learn about ways to participate in the project, contact Carrie Field, MiThrive Coordinator at email@example.com.
George Heartwell to speak on the Paris Climate Accord March 14
Former Grand Rapids Mayor George Heartwell will speak at the next meeting of the Citizens Environmental Watch and Action Coalition on Thursday, March 14, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. It will be held at Brooks Township Hall, 490 Quarterline Street in Newaygo. The meeting is open to the public and the presentation is free.
“The Paris Accord: Looking Back, Running Ahead” will review the global climate change agreement. Even though President Trump has initiated the process to withdraw the US from the Paris Climate Agreement, Heartwell states he will share the basis for his optimism that its goals can still be achieved in this country.
“It was the birth of grandchildren - and the recognition that they will live with this degraded environment long after I’m gone - that serves as a motivation for me to do what I can to improve our world for their benefit,” stated Heartwell. “As Mayor I focused on making Grand Rapids environmentally sustainable. This meant making our City completely independent of fossil fuels by 2025; cleaning our Grand River water; reducing water consumption; and conserving electricity in City operations.”
During his 12-year tenure as Grand Rapids Mayor, the city was recognized by the United Nations as the country’s first Regional Center for Expertise in Education for Sustainable Development, and by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce as the nation’s most sustainable mid-sized city. In addition, Mr. Heartwell was recognized by the U.S. Conference of Mayors with its Climate Protection Award, and was credentialed by the United Nations to represent U.S. Mayors at the United Nations Framework Conference on Climate Change in Warsaw in 2013 and in Paris in 2015.
Now a Newaygo County resident, George Heartwell is passionate about protecting the environment through policy and legislation, as well as by daily actions and commitments by community citizens. “Living on the magnificent Muskegon River provides a constant reminder of the importance -and the fragility - of these waters,” adds Heartwell. He is also “proud to serve on the Muskegon River Watershed Assembly Board.”
“We are very fortunate here in Newaygo County to have the expertise and passion of Mr. Heartwell, “states Sally Wagoner, CEWAC Coordinator. “As a member of CEWAC, he is eager to share his knowledge with our community members. I know there are hundreds of youth and adults in Newaygo County who love our natural places, but don’t know what to do to make sure they are protected for future generations. Coming to this meeting and hearing what Mr. Heartwell has done can give hope and a roadmap for what we can do in Newaygo County. “
CEWAC is a program of 3R Education which brings citizens of Newaygo County together at monthly meetings and presentations to learn about local environmental concerns, organizations and activities. CEWAC also seeks to engage youth and all community members to “get outside”, to volunteer for one of our many county conservation organizations, and to know how our legislators are voting to protect our environment. 3R Education is a 501c3 non-profit organization whose mission is to enhance the environmental health and beauty of Newaygo County by educating residents about the 3Rs of environmental sustainability: Reduce, Reuse, Recycle.
For more information about CEWAC, email: NewaygoClimateMarch@gmail.com.