Drug abuse problem draws Obama to visit state

An editorial from The Times West Virginian

FAIRMONT, W.Va. — How serious is the drug-abuse problem in West Virginia?

It’s reached the magnitude of drawing Barack Obama to the Mountain State for only the third time during his presidency.

 The White House has confirmed that Obama will visit Charleston Wednesday to hold a community discussion on the prescription drug abuse and heroin epidemic hitting West Virginia communities.

The White House says Obama hopes to discuss efforts by local, state and federal authorities to address the problem, along with initiatives in the private sector. The audience will include educators, medical professionals, law enforcement and others affected by the state’s drug-abuse problem.

“Communities in West Virginia and in states across the country have been developing and implementing responses that involve all sectors of their communities,” said Keith Maley, a White House spokesman. “The president hopes to discuss local, state and federal efforts, as well as private-sector initiatives with those who are addressing the epidemic on a daily basis.”

Gov. Earl Ray Tomblin’s spokesman, Chris Stadelman, says Tomblin is pleased that Obama is coming to West Virginia to talk about an issue that’s been a focus of the governor’s administration…


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