NORTHPORT OFFICIALS COLLABORATE AGAINST ACTIVE SUBSTANCE ABUSE AREAS
On Monday, October 22nd the Northport East Northport Drug and Alcohol Task Force joined a collaborative meeting to address and work on solutions to the growing substance abuse problems amongst local teens. The meeting was set up specifically to target the severely active drug and alcohol use area on school grounds of W.J. Brosnan as well as the Northport CVS, both which are across from the Northport Public Library off of Laurel Avenue. Those attending included school administrators including Superintendent Dr. McDermott, the high school principal, the districts building and grounds superintendent, security director, the Northport Police Department, the library director and of course, the Northport East Northport Drug and Alcohol Task Force.
From the beginning the meeting was a success in its self, because there has never been a collaborative effort like this to achieve a common goal which is to make this area a safe, drug free zone. All parties committed to work together to find solutions to eliminate the substance proliferation, abuse and vandalism to all of the properties involved. Knowing that families with young children use the athletic fields as well as the students in the school, a number of viable solutions were proposed, and hopefully will be implemented soon.
Many of the proposed ideas would be effective. Some of them include the school installing a damage resistant fencing system around the property with good lighting. Effective and timely patrols to the properties, with a dedicated security patrol phone number (real-time) for community assistance when they see activity that needs to be reported. Use of video surveillance with real-time observation by security at all times. It was suggested that CVS look into rebuilding their fencing and lighting system and include an external video system as well. Since evidence of drug abuse such as heroin and drinking on their property is clear, we hope that these measures may be put in place. They did not seem willing at the time, but to they did indicate desire to work with the group. The Northport Police will work closely with the school security teams to assist with as close to real-time action as possible when necessary. It is most interesting however that there does not seem to be any interest from CVS or the school to open an investigation of the crimes committed. The Library will also participate in surveillance and calling security when suspicious activity is seen. All were committed to seeing this through to the end where these grounds will be drug free safe zones.
This meeting was the first of what should be many. A lot will be accomplished from this type of collaboration, and especially so if community citizens get involved. With as little as phone call to the right people, suspicious activity can be addressed and investigated. Believe it or not, one person can make a difference. Think of what a community working together could achieve.
Northport East Northport Drug and Alcohol Task Force