• Use the Time at Home to Talk to Your Children About Drug and Alcohol Abuse and Misuse

    Posted 4/28/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    We have been working to ensure that all of the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ) events and services move online and are available virtually for those who need. Over the next several weeks, our blog will be highlighting each of our programs and how they have adapted to continue to serve the community during this difficult time.


    Although this time at home can be confusing and stressful for children, it is more important than ever to have an open line of communication with your children. Our 15 Minute Child Break program, has been made virtual and can be a vital tool in talking to your child about drug and alcohol abuse and misuse.

  • All PDFNJ Programs Are Now Virtual

    Posted 4/22/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    As we continue to meet the new demands of the COVID-19 pandemic, PDFNJ has adapted all of its programs to make them virtual. Now more than ever it is critical not to lose focus and continue the work toward prevention of substance use and abuse. All of PDFNJ's school initiatives - from the 3rd Grade Activity Book to the 15 Minute Child Break and Drugs Don't Work in NJ workplace assistance - have been adapted for you to participate in or implement for your home, school, business, or community. 

  • New Jersey’s Patient Opioid Notification Law Sees Great Results in the Fight Against the Opioid Epidemic

    Posted 4/15/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    I am happy to report some good news on the fight against the opioid epidemic.  As we have discussed numerous times, the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ), has spearheaded and advocated for the passage of the Patient Opioid Notification Law, a New Jersey law that requires medical practitioners to discuss the addictive potential of opioid-based painkillers with their patients and caretakers, and discuss safer non-opioid pain relief alternatives.

  • Alcohol Awareness Month

    Posted 4/8/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    April is Alcohol Awareness Month.  At the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ), it is more important than ever that we continue to communicate our message to live a lifestyle free of drug, alcohol and substance abuse.


    According to data from the Nielsen Market Research Firm, national sales of alcoholic beverages spiked 55% in the week ending March 21, compared to the same time last year.  Excessive drinking can compromise your immune system and it can also impair good judgement.  It is important, that we show today’s children and teens that drinking alcohol is not the answer to during difficult situations. You can use this time to talk to your kids about underage drinking, as our research has shown that talking with your kids for as little as fifteen minutes a day is great prevention about drug and alcohol abuse.

  • PDFNJ Continues to Deliver Drug-Free Messages Virtually During These Difficult Times

    Posted 3/31/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    I hope that everyone is safe and healthy this week. As with everyone throughout New Jersey, all of us at the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ) have had to adapt our way of communicating our messages, and deliver virtual experiences instead of in person events we had planned.  I am excited that even through these difficult times, PDFNJ has been able to reinvent our programs and adapt to make sure our important drug-free communications continue, as they are needed now more than ever.

  • We Are Here To Help

    Posted 3/24/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    We are now in our second week of remote work here at the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ).  Just like many of you, we are adjusting to life at home with our families, juggling remote work, and the other stressors we are facing in this uncertain time.


    The COVID-!9 pandemic is obviously forefront on everyone’s minds, and it is important to remember that there are many resources available to you in case you need them. I spoke with New Jersey 101.5 last week about the additional stress we are all under and how that can put people at risk for substance abuse, especially our young people.  It is important that our children feel comforted and supported during this stressful time, and that we are making sure to talk openly with them about drug and alcohol abuse during difficult times. 

  • A Message From The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey

    Posted 3/18/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    All of us at the Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey (PDFNJ) care deeply about our community and the community at large around the world.  We understand that the effects of the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) are weighing on us all.  As the state of New Jersey has taken the appropriate steps to restrict contact through social distancing, it is important to remember that we should all be there for one another. Give people the benefit of the doubt and exhibit kindness. We should take this time in our home with our families as a time to reconnect and spend time with one another.

  • Alumni In Recovery Provides Awareness And Hope To Local Communities

    Posted 3/11/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    Alumni In Recovery (A in R) is an organization comprised of people within the recovery community, along with parents who have lost a loved one to the disease of addiction. A in R provides awareness and hope by sharing vital information. 


    They host community events across Bergen county to provide people with the opportunity to talk about addiction, find a sense support in the community and change perceptions about this terrible disease.  A in R’s next event is to take place on Thursday, March 12th from 7-9 pm at the Closter Senior Center in Closter in NJ.


    This week’s blog post is from Glynis Burke from A in R who shares her personal story with us and will be speaking at the event in Closter as well.


    All the best, 
    Angelo M. Valente, Executive Director of PDFNJ


    By: Glynis Burke


    On May 19, 2019 I got the call that any mother, or father or family member dreads. The evening prior, the last words my son said to me were, “Bye mom, love you.” We had spent the whole day gardening, digging and planting down at the Jersey shore. It was a perfect day. I had my son back. I was grateful and hopeful.

  • Opioid-Related Death Rates May Be Higher Than We Think

    Posted 3/4/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    The opioid epidemic may be harder to fight than originally thought.  A new study has revealed that the number of deaths due to opioid-related overdoses could be 28% higher than what is originally reported. The documentation relating to overdose deaths, often times, does not reveal the type of drug that caused the overdose.


    This underreporting of opioid-related deaths can result in the downplaying the severity of the opioid crisis we are facing in this country. The study delved further into these overdoses and uncovered that the type of drug that caused the overdose. It looked at a total of 632,331 drug overdoses between 1999 and 2016. Of these deaths, 78.2% were drug overdoses with known drug classification and 21.8% were unclassified drug overdoses. Of the unclassified drug overdoses, further investigation revealed that 71.8% involved opioids, translating to 99,160 additional opioid-related deaths.  Additionally, there were 70,000 drug overdose deaths in 2017, according to an estimate from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and based on the findings from the new study, over half of those deaths -- about 47,000 -- are suspected to have involved opioids.

  • Opioid Overdoses Are A Growing Problem In Children And Adolescents

    Posted 2/26/2020 by Angelo M. Valente

    A new research study released this week revealed that one in four opioid overdoses involved kids or teens. Nearly, 1 in 10 children and teens who overdosed on opioids were admitted to the critical care unit between 1015 and 2018.  In that time period, more than 1 in 5 of these overdoses was an attempted suicide. These alarming findings shed light on the stark reality that the opioid epidemic is taking a toll on our young people, and that opioid poisonings among this age group are becoming increasingly more and more likely to be life-threatening.


    There were 753,592 opioid poisoning cases reported to the National Poison Data System between 2005 and 2018, of these cases 207,543 (27.5%) involved those younger than 19 years old. Additionally, the percentage of patients in this age group admitted to a critical care unit increased from 6.6% to 9.6%, and deaths increased from .18% to .28%. Naloxone administration increased from 42.3% to 50.8%

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